Broody hen and hatching questions

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by purplepoen, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. purplepoen

    purplepoen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I finally have my first broody hen! [​IMG]

    I'd noticed she'd been staying in her box for the last few days and not letting the other girls in to lay. She wasn't even perching at night. After realizing she was broody I put fertilized eggs under her this morning and she has stayed with them all day. She looks perfectly content in there. She is a Black Australorp and is just over a year old.

    Since we've been wanting more chicks this is great that she's decided she wants to do the work for us. But since she's my first broody girl I have no idea what to expect. Will she need special care while she's sitting? I've heard that hens sometimes die because they wont get off their nests to eat and I certainly don't want that to happen. Is it OK to let her hatch her babies in the coop with all the other chickens? They're a very docile bunch, but I don't want the other girls to hurt them. At what point can I candle the eggs and see growth? How do I avoid having a bad egg expode on her?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks [​IMG]
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Congratulations![​IMG]

    I suggest you read this thread. It has some good info for you.

    Isolate a Broody? Thread
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=213218

    Will she need special care while she's sitting? I've heard that hens sometimes die because they wont get off their nests to eat and I certainly don't want that to happen.

    Most likely she will leave the nest once a day to eat, drink, and poop. If she is not pooping in her nest, she is most likely getting up and taking care of business. If you wish, when you check under her for the daily check for unmarked eggs, you can put her off the nest and see if she will eat, drink, and poo then.

    Is it OK to let her hatch her babies in the coop with all the other chickens? They're a very docile bunch, but I don't want the other girls to hurt them.

    People have been doing it that way for thousands of years. I'm not going to tell you that you will definitely not have problems if you let her hatch in the coop. Occasionally bad things happen. I peronally would not be concerned about it. There are risks any way you go. I'll isolate a broody from the time I give her egs to hatch until they hatch, but as soon as Mama is ready to leave the nest, she and the chicks will join the flock.

    At what point can I candle the eggs and see growth? How do I avoid having a bad egg expode on her?

    This candling site might help you.

    Candling
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/LC-candling.html

    Good luck!
     
  3. purplepoen

    purplepoen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 12, 2008
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    Great info, thanks [​IMG]
     
  4. mulia24

    mulia24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    problem solved. [​IMG]


    good luck [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]:fl
     
  5. ChrystalGail

    ChrystalGail Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2007
    Casa Grande, AZ
    Quote:Well, if it were me and you want the hen to raise the babies, move her to a different seperate pen. I just had a broody that hatched out two cute little fluff balls only to let the other chickens peck their head and make them bloody... Major bummer! One even lost one of it's toes! [​IMG] So, I had to take them both away... Some hens are more protective and others aren't. Mine wasn't... [​IMG] I'm just glad I found them before they had been killed, so now they have a chance.

    Just a heads up... I'm not trying to discourage you in any way, but I would have like to know this could/would happen so I could have moved her. This was my first broody hen and it is her first time hatching eggs, so maybe round 2 will be different. But, to be honest I won't let her do it again. I am a control freak and so in the incubator they go. No more hurt babies!!!!

    Take care and best of luck!
     
  6. purplepoen

    purplepoen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 12, 2008
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    I've tried countless times to hatch chicks in an incubator and it has never worked [​IMG] That's why I'm letting her do it herself. I'll try and be there when the little guys hatch to protect them. Thats really sad what happend to your chicks, thanks for the info.
     

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