broody hen

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by smithab, Feb 10, 2015.

  1. smithab

    smithab Out Of The Brooder

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    I have a hem that has gone broody. She has 5 eggs that she has been sitting on since Jan 18. I marked the eggs with the date to be sure. Today is Feb 9 and still no babies. How long do I give her to see if they hatch? I have roosters so they should be fertile. She only leaves the nest to eat and drink. She is in a pen by herself with her own coop. Ideas?
     
  2. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I'd give them a few more days. 21 days for hatching is just a guideline, pretty much for perfect incubating conditions. Eggs can hatch earlier or later depending on temps. I'm not sure where you live, but if its cold there, they could easily be delayed. Have you candled the eggs? At this point you wouldn't see much, the eggs would be pretty dark inside, but you can usually pick out some veins near the air cell and sometimes see some movement if they're still viable.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Texas Buffs

    Texas Buffs New Egg

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    Hi Smithab,

    I'm new here but I've hatched a few chicks both by incubator and broody hen. It should take 21 days almost exactly. I try to give them a day or two after that just to be sure all the eggs that are going to hatch do. If they haven't hatched within 23 days then something went wrong in the process. If it's cold where you live then it's possible that the eggs froze before she started sitting. Is she your only hen? Do you know if all the eggs were layed on the same day? If she's a young hen and this is her first time going broody she may not have taken proper care of them. Did you candle them at any time? They should be candled at around 7 days and then again at 14 days to make sure they are fertilized and growing appropriately. Also you definitely want to get rid of any that aren't progressing. You only have to have one bad egg explode once to learn THAT lesson!
     
  4. smithab

    smithab Out Of The Brooder

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    These are my first chicks. I am not sure how old my hen is because I bought her at an auction in October. I have a total of 6 hens and she is the only one that has gone broody. I live in central Georgia and we haven;t had too cold weather this winter. We have has a few cold nights (10-20 degrees) but only a few. She has been tending the eggs diligently. I am getting concerned since they were laid on 1/18 and no babies as of yet. If they don;t hatch with in the week, should I buy a few babies to "slip under her" when I remove the eggs? I don't want her to get discouraged. She is trying so hard to be a mommy.
     
  5. farnorth

    farnorth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If the eggs don't hatch that is what I would do....slip some chicks under her so she will have some rewards for all the hard work and she will snap out of being broody faster with babies to tend to.
     
  6. SusanPC

    SusanPC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If the eggs don't hatch, don't hesitate to swap a few day-olds under her one night for the eggs. My broody BO broke all her eggs and was wasting away in the nest box. We gave her 9 chicks and she finally is mothering and walking around with her chicks. Of course now I have lots of new chickens too because I was soft for my broody hen. It's been exciting.
     
  7. smithab

    smithab Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 1, 2014
    Thank you for all of the advice. I am happy to report that we have 3 chicks today.[​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. RaisinAFlock

    RaisinAFlock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Congrats! I have 2 chicks hatched that survived, 2 got stuck and crushed under mama and died, I have 3 broody hens, and 5 nests of 10-15 eggs, one or two nests with eggs marked 1/19 and 1/20 and aprx, 1/25-2/30, the rest of the eggs are 2/6 waiting to save them as they hatch as I can't leave them outside
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2015
  9. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    As I said, 21 days is really just a guideline. They are super cute, congrats :)
     
  10. smithab

    smithab Out Of The Brooder

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    Congrats on your babies and I am sorry for the one's you lost.
     

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