Broody Hen

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by psychoroo, Oct 18, 2014.

  1. psychoroo

    psychoroo Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 19, 2013
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    I have a blue laced red wyandotte that has gone broody. Somehow she has either managed to take 14 eggs out of the nest boxes and cache them in a corner of the coop under the pine shavings or, she has connived with the other girls to lay an egg or two in the corner and cover it up for her. Either way, she is sitting on an assortment of 14 eggs.

    Do I have to do anything when the chicks are born? Do I need to separate them or go back to providing chick feed instead of layer feed or will momma take care them in her own way? I knew this was going to happen sooner or later but I thought they would at least wait til spring. I also didn't know they could be so sneaky about it.
     
  2. Mountain Peeps

    Mountain Peeps Change is inevitable, like the seasons Premium Member

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    Congrats on the broody!

    All you need to do before they hatch is make sure that nothing bothers the mama and that she is cozy and safe. Check on her every few days but not constantly. Broody hens like and need to be alone.

    As for after they hatch, again make sure the babies and mama are safe from predators and other chickens. Put them in a dog crate or something so they can just focus on each other for the first week. Mama and chicks both need to eat the chick feed. NO layer feed for the babies as it will damage their kidneys. Mama will be absolutely fine on the chick feed. Once they join the rest of the flock you need to either feed all of them chick, grower or flock raiser feed.
    Good luck![​IMG]
     
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    It all depends on your flock and how high in the pecking order she is. Some hens you can let brood with the flock, others need some separation for a bit. I choose to let the hen brood where ever she has chosen to sit. Then when the chicks hatch, I move them and momma to a private area within the coop with food/water, where she can tend to the chicks and bond with them. The rest of the flock can still see them and get used to them being new additions. Then, after about a week, I remove the door to the private area and they join the flock.
     
  4. psychoroo

    psychoroo Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 19, 2013
    Wicomico Church, VA
    Thanks for the replies. She is sitting well in a corner and even has another one of the girls and a rooster "standing guard". My biggest concern is with the weather. Last night dipped to the low 40's and the rest of the week is looking to be low 50's - high 40's. Guess mother nature will take her course.
     

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