Broody Hen in Winter....can she hatch?

carbon county chicks

10 Years
Mar 10, 2009
We weren't getting any eggs this winter so we decided to put a light in the coop so we could get some eggs to hatch in the incubator. We put the light in 3 weeks ago and at first the egg production didn't increase but after a while we're getting about 5 eggs a day off our 8 hens which is great. We have also noticed some other strange things associated with the light being in there. The chickens stay out in their run at all hours of the night. But hey whatever.

Anyway, we now have a broody hen....I'm assuming she's broody cause she thinks it's spring because of all the extra light? So can she sit on and hatch eggs in the winter? I know it needs to be pretty warm under her and she keeps the humidity correct. But will she keep it warm enough? We live in Utah where it's pretty cold. But I can keep her dry and as warm as possible (without bringing her in the house or anything).

Any suggestions?
She may be able to, but most people that far north probably wait til it warms up a bit. The chicks would spend an awful lot of time under her to stay warm and wouldn't get much eating or foraging time. I had a broody hatch in February and all did fine, during one of our cold winters with temps running 25 to 45 for days at a time -- but personally that's as cold as I'd try it.

Most people put their coop light on a timer (I paid about $12 at the local hardware) so they chickens get 12 to 14 hours of daylight, but still have dark so they get enough rest.
I'm in Illinois and I just had a broody hatch chicks November 1st.

A few year ago I had one hatch out 13 in January when the temps were in the single digits.

Both of these birds were Red Jungle Fowl and I am pretty sure you could give them plastic Easter eggs and they could hatch them

Your bird may do just fine, but I'd give her a dry, draft free spot to raise the chicks.
I live in Ky and at the moment we are having crazy spring type weather and I've got a broody silkie but she started going broody when it was 30 degrees outside, I don't keep a light on for them the only light they have is the heat lamp which is over my broody at the moment and I put them up in their coop at night and I think your broody should be fine just make sure there aren't anydrafts and that you have a heat lamp bulb for when it gets nasty cold
I have my broody silkie hen laying on some eggs right now that I am hoping she will hatch. I'm not as far North as you but it gets pretty cold here usually in the winter, although this one has been unusually warm so far. I would let her try though, she'll be very happy. And as for them running all hours of the night, we have our light on a timer to come on in the mornings 2 hours before daylight so we get more eggs, but it shuts off at daylight, saves you electricity and your birds get to sleep. I do it in the morning instead of night because I don't want them to have to try and rooste in the dark. Good luck if you decide th try!

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