Broody chicken: help!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by StarlynMarie, Jun 26, 2016.

  1. StarlynMarie

    StarlynMarie In the Brooder

    Jun 18, 2015
    Antioch, CA
    I was a fool for thinking I wouldn't have to deal with a broody hen in my tiny little city flock, but dark days are upon me, my friends. One of my sweet (not so much, actually) Australorps, Petunia, has become broody over the last few days. I noticed it on Thursday night while putting the girls away. There she was just huddled in the back corner nesting box, all hunkered down while the others were on top of the coop. She screeched at me while I was trying to find her; nearly gave me a heart attack. Not wanting to deal with her Grand Master level of sass, I pushed her off the box and the eggs underneath her. I had to do the same just now. I know I've heard people say that one broody chicken doesn't bother the others so much as it does us, but I was just wondering how to get her to stop or how long it may last? She's just barely over a year and none of the other hens are doing it. The other night we had four eggs, last night we had three, and tonight we only had two. Im not finding eggs anywhere in the yard or in their coop seeing as Princess Petunia has taken over everyone's favorite nesting box.

    Any advice from Australorp parents or anyone for that matter? CAN I get her to stop or do I just have to put up with her sass until she snaps out of it? Or am I just worrying for no reason? It's getting hotter by the day and I don't want her starving or dehydrating herself.

    Please and thank you.

  2. robdog

    robdog Chirping

    Leave her in a separate small cage with food and water. No Bedding. Give it until she lays an egg 3-7 days and her hormones (Broodiness will stop).
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon

    If you don't want her to set, it's best to break her. Letting her set for no reason is pointless, and in the heat you don't need to risk any problems.

    If you're home all day, you can try going out to the coop multiple times a day and getting her off the nest. You'll need to be persistant, but it can work.

    If you're not home, a broody buster is the best thing. You'll want a wire bottom cage, with food and water. You can put a roost, but no bedding or nesting materials. Hang or elevate the cage if you can. The idea is to cool her underside, that helps break the hormonal cycle that keeps her broody.

    You can do a search here for "breaking a broody hen", there are lots of threads with some different methods. But the broody buster usually works in 3-5 days.

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