Broody hen, unfertilized egg

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Juliel26, Oct 23, 2016.

  1. Juliel26

    Juliel26 Just Hatched

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    I have an ~6 month old Barred Plymouth Rock who I guess is broody. This is my first experience with this (new chicken owner) so I'm not sure what to do, if anything. Do I just leave her be or should I be trying to get her out of the nesting box? I don't have roosters so she won't be hatching anything... Thanks!
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    [​IMG] You can just let her be until she becomes non broody or if you want her laying again you can remove her from the nest site and cage her until her broodiness 'breaks'.
     
  3. Adalida

    Adalida Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd try to break her broodiness since it can be hard on their bodies. One of mine lost quite a bit of weight being broody. If she's not a determined broody, you may be able to break her easily. Just take her off the nest, put her far away from it, and don't let her back to the nest for the day. It also helps to cool them off, you can dunk her in water (depending on the temperature where you are!) Most of mine snapped out of it after a day or two of repeatedly taking them off the nest and putting them in the duck pool. My buff orpington, however, was a determined broody who had to go to the cage. Good luck!
     
  4. Juliel26

    Juliel26 Just Hatched

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    Thank you! Will she not lay eggs until she is no longer broody?
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    [​IMG]

    What is she doing that makes you think she's broody?

    If she is, and you're not going to have her hatch chicks, I'd definitely break her. Brooding is hard on the body, and it interrupts egg production for up to a few months. Do a search on breaking a broody hen, several threads here on how to do it.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Has she been in nest day and night for at least 3 days?
    Is she squawking, growling, biting, generally putting up a real fuss if you try to touch her?
    How long has she been laying?

    ETA:
    You'll need to decide if you want her to hatch out some chicks, and how you will 'manage' it.
    Do you have, or can you get, some fertile eggs?
    Do you have the space needed? She may need to be separated by wire from the rest of the flock.
    Do you have a plan on what to do with the inevitable males? Rehome, butcher, keep in separate 'bachelor pad'?
    If you decide to let her hatch out some fertile eggs, this is a great thread for reference and to ask questions.
    It a long one but just start reading the first few pages, then browse thru some more at random.
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/496101/broody-hen-thread

    If you don't want her to hatch out chicks, best to break her broodiness promptly.
    My experience went like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest, I put her in a wire dog crate with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop and I would feed her some crumble a couple times a day.

    I let her out a couple times a day(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two.
    Water nipple bottle added after pic was taken.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2016
  7. Juliel26

    Juliel26 Just Hatched

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    She started laying eggs about a month ago. Almost every time I go outside she is sitting in a nesting box. I let all the girls out of the attached run to free range at night for about an hour and she will come out for that. She will also still sleep on her roost at night.
    So far she isn't too grumpy. She gave me one gentle peck a couple days ago when I took an egg out from under her but that's it ( she is also typically a very sweet girl). She is not making a ton of noise.
    I can take her out of the box but she just hops right back in, over and over.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    If she's not spending the night in the nest, she's not truly broody.
    She may be 'thinking' about it......but nah, she's not serious.
    They can spend time just sitting in the nest, either before or after laying.......or some spend time in the nest without laying, but go back later to lay.
     
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I don't think she's broody either. Just sounds like new layer behavior. They hang out in the nest a lot. But, if they sleep on the roost, and willingly jump out to free range, etc, they're not really broody. Probably a good thing in this case, sounds like you want eggs a lot more than chicks right now [​IMG]
     
  10. Juliel26

    Juliel26 Just Hatched

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    Thanks everyone, it's really appreciated. This is all very new to me!
     

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