Broody Hen--A Few Questions

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by chicksgalore, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. chicksgalore

    chicksgalore Songster

    Jul 19, 2008
    I have a first time broody silkie. She's setting on 8 eggs and I check under her twice a day because if any of the other hens lay in her box, she'll pull those eggs in under her too. Last night though when I checked, she was in a different box, sitting on a nest of 6 different eggs! Why would she do this? Are those eggs still okay to use?

    I was debating screening off her box to keep her in and the others out but I wondered if this was the best scenario? If I do that and then let her out once the chicks hatch, will the others pick on her?

  2. pinguin

    pinguin In the Brooder

    Jan 4, 2009
    SW IL
    Quote:"Eggs is eggs" to most chickens. Once her beady little brain zeros in on eggs, she just knows that's where she's supposed to sit. If it's not too cold, her setting eggs may still be alive. When are they due to hatch?

    Our first broodies (co-brooded) were in the open coop till shortly before their babies hatched. Never again. IMO, broodies are calmer when they're isolated from the others--it's instinctive for a broody to find an isolated spot to set on her eggs and raise her chicks.

    Any time a bird has been away from the flock for more than a week you can have problems reintegrating. Last week, I separated two broodies from their chicks (8 and 10 weeks old). Good thing that they both gained weight on chick starter because they've spent a lot of time running from the others. When the chickens are outside in the grass (in their supervised "run"), I put both girls outside the fence for a little R&R/grazing. But things are better.

    Good luck with your broody. Once you candle again, let us know.
  3. Chicken Woman

    Chicken Woman Incredible Egg

    Oct 16, 2008
    I put my broodie in a wire dog crate covered in chicken wire so the chicks won't be able to get out. I put the crate in the coop on the floor in a dark corner. She has a chick size waterer and feeder on with her.

    This way she never leaves the flock but her babies will be protected from the other chiskens and she will stay on her eggies.

    Good luck with your hatch !
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2009
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
  5. chicksgalore

    chicksgalore Songster

    Jul 19, 2008
    Thanks. I am going to screen the doorway into the nest and just provide her with her own water/food. Today, she was on the right nest (plus an extra egg) but one of her eggs was broken.[​IMG] She's only 5 days into setting.

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