Broody Hen in Decemeber!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by UrbanSilkies, Dec 6, 2015.

  1. UrbanSilkies

    UrbanSilkies Out Of The Brooder

    55
    1
    33
    Aug 5, 2015
    Hi everyone,

    My silkie hen just went broody last night, and I'm not sure what to do. She only has one egg under her at the moment, and I'm worried that the future chick might freeze during the winter. Does anyone have any experience with a broody in winter? Also, I was thinking of putting a couple quail eggs under her too, just in case her baby doesn't hatch.
     
  2. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,427
    407
    226
    Apr 22, 2015

    I have two serama hens brooding and a silkie hen is clucking today, so she will be brooding soon too. But my coop is heated (Wisconsin). Depending on where you are located the hen and future chick might do fine. You can break her of broodiness by putting the hen in a bare cage for a few days to a week. If the quail eggs are very small they will break under the silkie hen, however, I used my silkies to hatch serama bantam eggs that were half the size of silkie eggs. If the quail eggs are of that size the hen might hatch them.
     
  3. UrbanSilkies

    UrbanSilkies Out Of The Brooder

    55
    1
    33
    Aug 5, 2015
    Her coop will be between 5-10 degrees Celsius, or 41-50 degrees farenheit during the incubation period, and after that she will be in a room kept at 50 degrees farenheit until the chicks are about a week old. I will be traveling with her while she is broody though (an 8 hour road trip). She's done it before, but will the egg be ok? It will be around day 14 of the incubation period.

    Also, where is she supposed to keep the egg (obviously this is my first broody hen)? She keeps it near her neck/upper chest. It kinda points out of her feathers. I tried putting around the middle of her body, and she moves it back up.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2015
  4. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,427
    407
    226
    Apr 22, 2015

    Please post a picture of hen brooding the egg. I think I can answer better when seeing the situation.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2015
  5. UrbanSilkies

    UrbanSilkies Out Of The Brooder

    55
    1
    33
    Aug 5, 2015
    Yes, she would have to come with us on the road trip since we are leaving for a week or two. We will put her in a nest box with her egg. I was wondering if the movement/vibration that the car makes could disturb the egg since shipped eggs have a lower hatch rate, but this egg would already have a chick in it. She's sleeping in the picture and moved the egg again, it's where the arrow is pointing. You can feel it through her feathers.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2015
  6. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,427
    407
    226
    Apr 22, 2015
    Yes, she would have to come with us on the road trip since we are leaving for a week or two. We will put her in a nest box with her egg. I was wondering if the movement/vibration that the car makes could disturb the egg since shipped eggs have a lower hatch rate, but this egg would already have a chick in it. She's sleeping in the picture and moved the egg again, it's where the arrow is pointing. You can feel it through her feathers.

    Eggs are quite durable. I have taken birds on nest and eggs in the car to new locations. The biggest problem here is that the hen might stop brooding; most hens will not accept a drastic change. It takes quite a jolt to break the membranes of an egg and normal car vibration would not do that. However, a sudden stop would. Make the hen's nest deeper and more concave. She should be brooding with the egg well under her. No part of the egg should be showing.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2015
  7. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,427
    407
    226
    Apr 22, 2015

    At the temperatures you mention in your post the hen will have no problem caring for chicks.

    Do you have a rooster?
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2015
  8. UrbanSilkies

    UrbanSilkies Out Of The Brooder

    55
    1
    33
    Aug 5, 2015
    Thank you so much! I did as you recommended for the nest, and the egg is now about in the middle of her body. I'm glad that the temperature will be fine, I was worried. Do you think that they will need extra heat when hatching since they are wet, or is 50 degrees fine?
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2015
  9. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,427
    407
    226
    Apr 22, 2015

    No extra heat is needed. The hen will keep he egg/chick warm. Do you have a rooster? This might sound silly to you, but not long ago someone asked if roosters laid eggs.
     
  10. UrbanSilkies

    UrbanSilkies Out Of The Brooder

    55
    1
    33
    Aug 5, 2015
    Yes, I have a rooster. I've never seen him mate her, but her eggs have the fertile "bullseye" circle.

    Her first couple eggs looked like this,

    [​IMG]

    but now they look like this. From pictures I've seen, it seems like these are still fertile eggs, right?

    [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by