Broody Hen help!!!!!


In the Brooder
5 Years
Jul 1, 2014
Flower Mound, TX
Good morning chicken friends!
We have a clutch of eggs and our neighbor brought over a broody hen last night. We have a separate crate set up for her, because our current coop isn't large enough for a separated area.
She has access to food and water and enough room to walk around.
Seems like it should work!
She has been settling in, but laying next to the nest or in front of it! She hasn't quite adopted the eggs.
Anyone have experience with adopting a broody hen??? Any idea how long it will take, if it works at all???
Thank you sooooo much for your help!!!


First of all, how do you know she's really broody? If she's still laying eggs, I have doubts she is.

Second, how does anyone expect her to "settle in" to a place that's completely strange to her? I have doubts, knowing chickens are loathe change of any sort, that she will go along with your scheme.

To get a broody to accept a clutch of eggs, she has to have laid her last eggs in a nest she has chosen, and then, after she has settled in, you slip your eggs into her nest while she's off it for a quick poop break.
I agree with all of your points!
Thank you for your advice.

The broody hen is my neighbors and she had been sitting for a week, without laying eggs. She only went on her little walk abouts.
My neighbor was being kind in letting us try to hatch some eggs of our own since none of our hens have ever gone broody!
I assumed she might not be happy with her location change, you are right!
I was just looking to see if anyone had ever tried anything like this before!
If she is broody get a cardboard box (cut plenty of small holes for ventilation) and put it over the nest with her below it at night. Normally the next morning they think it is their nest. I normally leave the box over the nest and just cut a hole in it for them to go in and out. They seem to prefer their nests somewhere darker and quiet.
Thank you! We had thought to try that, but my neighbor suggested she might get too warm. The hen laid on the nest for a long while. She did get up about 2 hours ago for a stretch. Haven't been able to go back to check in awhile!
Update: she's on day 6 of being on the nest! We are thankful!
She hasn't eaten much, and I am noticing she only got up to poo once. So, we picked her up today and sure enough, she had pooped in 2 corners of the nest. Thankfully it was just on the bedding.
I have noticed from time to time as she adjusts, eggs are periodically out from under her. They are never the same eggs though! Do I really need to candle at day 10 to make sure there aren't any undeveloped ones?
I have never done any of this before, let alone candling and egg!!
Update again!!!
Day 7 and my neighbor encouraged us to candle to see if any were duds.
We have 10 out of 11 developing right on track! What an absolutely amazing miracle to witness!!
I took a short video but the pictures I took didn't really turn out.
The mother didn't really love it at first, but she calmed down really nicely.
Candled day 14!!! All 10 look great. No pictures as we went quickly. It looks like at least 1 of our Easter egger hens produced an egg fertilized by our bantam rooster! We might have some interesting chicks!!

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