Broody Hen

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by chickenmom2074, Jul 3, 2016.

  1. chickenmom2074

    chickenmom2074 Just Hatched

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    Jun 8, 2016
    I only have a small flock, one rooster and 3 hens.
    One of my hens has taken over a nest and we had left eggs in there for a few days.
    They all use the same nest to lay eggs, although they have made 2.
    Can I leave her with the other ones where they have a second option for laying? or should I just block off the nest she is in with space for her to get up if she wants?
     
  2. carlf

    carlf Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 2, 2016
    Mobile, AL
    I would leave her alone and let the hens sort it out.
    At some point she will get very assertive and defend the nest and not let the other 2 lay.
    My non-broody hen made a nest of her own once my broody hen defended the nest.
    Add some fake eggs to your other box if you don't have any in there now, it will help the other hens get the hint.

    Note, if your birds are free-range, no telling where the other hens will start to lay! So keep an eye on them.
     
  3. chickenmom2074

    chickenmom2074 Just Hatched

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    Jun 8, 2016
    Thank you! i didnt want to move her and have it not work out. Shes pretty detrmined.

    They are free range and stay super close but i will watch the more now. thanks so much
     
  4. carlf

    carlf Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You may also want to mark the eggs that have been under the hen the longest, with a light pencil stripe or two, so if another hen dumps an egg in, you can tell which is which.
    You don't want the other hens adding eggs to the clutch after she's been setting 2-3 days since it will spread out hatching times too long.

    Next time she goes broody, if you want to hatch a group of eggs, collect them for 3-4 days and don't wash or refrigerate, just put in a padded open contained at room temp until you have the number you want. Then place them all under her at once. When wildfowl nest in the wild, they lay eggs over a 7-14 day period but don't set until they lay the last egg, so you can hold fertile eggs at room temp for a while.
     
  5. chickenmom2074

    chickenmom2074 Just Hatched

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    Jun 8, 2016
    She got off the nest today, its 83 degrees outside... will she go back? she was on it all night, not in her normal roosting spot.
    and most of the morning she stayed on as well. its only noon time now..
     
  6. carlf

    carlf Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 2, 2016
    Mobile, AL
    Probably, she will get up from time to time to go eat, drink & poop. When its warmer, she might stay off longer.
     

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