Broody Hen Rejecting Eggs?

ashleyimme

In the Brooder
Oct 1, 2019
23
20
29
Hello! I have a hen that has been broody for 5-6 weeks now. We dont have a rooster, so she had no fertile eggs to hatch. When we tried to break her broody-ness and were unsuccessful, my cousin brought over a dozen fertile eggs and we put them under her last week. However... she seems to be switching nesting boxes to sit in an empty box rather than the box with the eggs... and this has me very confused...

I’ve tried putting the eggs under her again and when I do she will tuck them under her when I place them down, and it seems like she’s accepting them... but she will switch boxes again the next day.

If she doesn’t want to sit on/hatch any eggs, why is she still acting broody? Any thoughts or opinions would be greatly appreciated... I’m new to chicken ownership!
 

ABBandit

Chirping
Aug 10, 2020
50
50
53
Wadsworth, Illinois
You can try and put the eggs under her during the night time and see if she is still sitting on them come morning time. If she is sitting on them during the morning, she will more than likely accept the eggs. I've done this before with some hens, and some of them accepted the eggs while others rejected them (most of the hens accepted the eggs). If you don't want her to be broody anymore, keep her out of the coop. Doing this in my case almost immediately breaks their broodiness. Hope this helps😃
 
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MGG

Crowing
Feb 7, 2020
6,801
10,927
423
Hello! I have a hen that has been broody for 5-6 weeks now. We dont have a rooster, so she had no fertile eggs to hatch. When we tried to break her broody-ness and were unsuccessful, my cousin brought over a dozen fertile eggs and we put them under her last week. However... she seems to be switching nesting boxes to sit in an empty box rather than the box with the eggs... and this has me very confused...

I’ve tried putting the eggs under her again and when I do she will tuck them under her when I place them down, and it seems like she’s accepting them... but she will switch boxes again the next day.

If she doesn’t want to sit on/hatch any eggs, why is she still acting broody? Any thoughts or opinions would be greatly appreciated... I’m new to chicken ownership!
The best option in your situation is to block off all the other nests. Do you have an incubator for back up in case she quits? Is this her first time being broody?
 

Willow2253

Songster
Dec 6, 2019
734
2,240
171
Eastern Oregon
Hens can get confused and switch nests if they have access to multiply nests while broody. Like MGG said, block her access to other nests.
 
May 2, 2018
23
37
64
I just had my first broody and the same thing was happening. Turns out some of the other hens would crowd into the box with her and lay eggs into the clutch. I'm guessing she didn't appreciate being squeezed out and would leave the nest. 'II'd find her sitting in other nesting boxes. For about 4-5 days I had to keep putting her back onto the eggs. Eventually I encased an area around one of the nesting boxes for her to have a safe space where the others wouldn't disturb her. It worked. Yesterday was day 21 and three of the six eggs hatched. Hoping the rest hatch today.

Good luck!
 

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