Broody hen questions

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by 77horses, May 10, 2009.

  1. 77horses

    77horses ◊The Spontaneous Pullet!◊

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    Aug 19, 2008
    [CONFIDENTIAL]
    One of our Buff Orpington pullets has been going in and out of broodiness. One of my questions is: Will she ever be serious about sitting on the eggs? She sometimes sits on the ones she laid and if we put any near her, she will roll them under her. And if another chicken goes near her, she will growl and scream at them. But she only does this for like half the day or less, then she gets off them and forgets all about them.

    Also, if she does get serious about being broody, when(or if) the

    eggs hatch, do we leave the chicks with the hen or start taking them and putting them in a brooder box?

    Thanks! [​IMG]
     
  2. hinkjc

    hinkjc Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    PA
    Some broodies never figure things out, so don't be surprised if she doesn't. Some don't do well brooding with other chickens around. You may need to isolate her to convince her to sit. Although, sometimes that is enough to convince them not to. I know, you can't win. lol If she's in her first year and this is her first time, I would give her some fake eggs to get her interested. Once she stays for a couple nights on the nest, then you know she's serious.

    As for how to raise them, I find broody raised chicks are a bit wilder than brooder raised chicks. If you let her raise them, you'll likely have to give her space of her own to do so. If not, then bring them in to the brooder once they're dry and fluffy and before she leaves the nest.
     
  3. 77horses

    77horses ◊The Spontaneous Pullet!◊

    7,443
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    Aug 19, 2008
    [CONFIDENTIAL]
    Quote:Thanks! [​IMG] We leave the eggs that she laid(and the ones we gave to her) until she finally gets off them. She acts so serious about it, but then in a few or more hours, all she wants is to go outside and free range. [​IMG]
     
  4. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    Virginia
    I always let mama hen raise her own chicks. I feel like it's her reward for all the hard work. It's so much easier on me - I don't have to clean a brooder, hang a heat lamp or dip their beaks in water. There's something so natural about it!

    On the other hand, the babies are wilder while they're young, but once they got older they act just like the rest of my chickens.
     

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