Broody hen at day 18

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by pettpaintings, Sep 1, 2008.

  1. pettpaintings

    pettpaintings Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 1, 2008
    UK
    Hi all I am new here I have a broody hen sitting on 6 assorted hatching eggs, she has been broody before and sat it out without eggs for the full three weeks so this time round we decided to give her something to do, not sure why but I really don't think anything will happen? she is in a nest box in the hen house with two subordinate hens who have been laying their eggs in her nest every day for the last 18 days, I have been taking their eggs out when she leaves the nest for ablutions (just a few minutes each day)
    Today however the other girls have not been allowed in her nest and have both laid in the next box is this a sign that she knows her eggs are about to hatch?
    I've had a few chooks for several years simply for the eggs and have big fat 0 experience of this :eek: so can anyone with experience tell me what to expect in the next few days and what if anything I need to be doing?
    Thank you
     
  2. pettpaintings

    pettpaintings Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 1, 2008
    UK
    Anyone????[​IMG]
     
  3. Quail_Antwerp

    Quail_Antwerp [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Mrs

    Aug 16, 2008
    Ohio
    I honestly don't know if a hen knows when it is getting close to time for her chicks to hatch or not.

    If you leave her alone she should hatch her babies just fine, but I wouldn't leave her and her babies in the coop with the other adult chickens. They may attack and kill her new babies if you do.
     
  4. pettpaintings

    pettpaintings Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 1, 2008
    UK
    Oh thank you, I had wondered about that but as she is chief hen I thought she would keep the other two away from any babies, especially as she has kept them both out of the nestbox today, I was hoping that she would protect them is there no possibility of that happening? if so I need to get some alternative accomodation asap if chicks arrive:eek:
     
  5. Quail_Antwerp

    Quail_Antwerp [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]Mrs

    Aug 16, 2008
    Ohio
    The chicks will wander a bit of a distance away from Mama in the chicken yard. She could be the best Mama hen you have, but that doesn't mean the other hens won't still try to get at the babies.

    My mom has a hen with 5 babies right now. Originally, this hen had 14 but a hawk got a few. They are a couple weeks old now and they range away from Mama and into areas she can't fit into and then Mama is freaking out while babies are eating and scratching, not realizing they could be in danger.

    My suggestion is fix up a small area to move Mama and her babies too until they are 4-6 weeks old. Then you might be able to put them back into the flock and they will have a better chance.
     

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