Broody Hen abandons eggs after two weeks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ferrycreek, Mar 24, 2012.

  1. ferrycreek

    ferrycreek New Egg

    Mar 26, 2008
    This is our second abandonment by first time broody hens. So far in our chicken project we've had two successful broods. Both hens were just over a year old, one barnyard and one Buff Orpington. We want to morph our flock to pure BuffOrp's and we bought a dozen BO eggs for broody hens twice recently. Both hens quit after two weeks of setting and the dog has now eaten $60 worth of unfinished BO eggs. Really disappointing and expensive! Turning these hens into sausage seems justified. Both hens had quiet private quarters; same quarters used by previous successful brooders. One successful hen quit at 19days and broke out of the brooding pen. She was having a dust bath and the eggs were cold when we found her. We covered the eggs with a towel until she settled down, then put her back into the brooding pen where she went back to work and hatched six of eleven eggs. The next attempt produced nine chicks, so we're not completely shut out. But, the successful broods were their own eggs. The abandoned eggs are a major hit on the chicken budget.

    So we wonder, is this normal behavior for hens, some quit before hatching? Maybe they're too young, although they initially seem eager to brood. The hens are about 15mos old. We're thinking to give up on pure BO chickens and settle for barnyard chickens, but we do prefer the pleasant BO personalities. We can't afford any more $3.00 fertile eggs right now. Will the hens become more reliable brooders as they age? Any insight will be appreciated.
  2. groundpecker

    groundpecker Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 26, 2011
    Rison, Arkansas
    Buy and incubator. hova bator is an excellent choice for the price. Try to avoid Little Giant bators. An auto egg turner is also a good choice.
    You can purchase both for around $100 - $150. You can always purchase more eggs and take the chance on a broody hen.

    You may also put up and ad and have someone local here on byc to hatch the eggs for you.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012

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