Broody Hens

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by MelissaBA, Oct 19, 2014.

  1. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, here goes a long story...two days ago I had a hen go broody. So, I decided to just let her sit on the eggs since this would be my first time witnessing a broody hen and eggs hatching with a hen instead of an incubator. Well this morning I went to feed and she came down to eat. Well, then she went back up but sat on the wrong nest. I had another chicken sitting in the nest with the eggs so I switched them around to get her back on the eggs she had been sitting on. Well this afternoon I go back to check on them, and the other hen has gone broody as well. So I have two sitting. What I am wondering is will this affect my other hens laying because now they have two of my nesting boxes occupied. Should I move them out somewhere else or just leave them alone?
     
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    It would be better to just leave them, as broodies hate being moved and often refuse to continue sitting afterwards. Mark the eggs they are brooding with a non-toxic marker (I've used crayons and lead pencils in the past with no adverse effect on the egg/embryo, but a Sharpie works well too). Check every day to see if any of your other hens added fresh eggs to the broodies' nests and remove those. When hatch day(s) come it may be a good idea to block the nest boxes, so the other hens don't bother them while the chicks are hatching.
     
  3. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, now I have another hen going broody and she is sitting on the eggs...so should I still leave the eggs and let both hens sit?
     
  4. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Have you got an epidemic going on by you? lol Give her her own eggs in her own nest, maybe borrow some from the other two, unless you don't mind having an awful lot of chicks running around in 3 weeks' time. I could think of worse things... [​IMG]
     
  5. slav defence

    slav defence Out Of The Brooder

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    I think that broodyness is not good for the ones doing egg business. It is not a problem for the ones keeping chicks as pets but those which are doing business must mark those chicks(& their eggs) which are getting broody and consult with pedigree hatcher.(avoid flock mating &do pen mating to find out sire & dam of your progeny)
    The pedigree hatcher will suggests you the type of mating and type of strain you should select to avoid broody strain in your progeny. Plus,he/she will also do progeny test of your newly hatched chicks and will be helping you to eliminate this character:)
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2014
  6. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    sumi...I believe it's in the water....LOL....I honestly only wanted eggs under the first hen that went broody. I didn't expect any of the others to go broody. Also, it is affecting my egg layers, they stand around and wait for the nests to empty out but can't get in. I have around 20 layers total and 4 nesting boxes, but with these going broody it's put stress in the coop. I have been trying to keep the other nesting boxes emptied so the broody hens don't occupy them all but it's still stressing everybody out...I am not sure what I need to do...LOL
     
  7. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Put some "emergency" nest boxes in there. My hens quite happily laid their eggs in 5 gallon buckets. Place them on their sides with some nesting materials and something resembling an egg (gold ball will do) in the coop.
     
  8. MelissaBA

    MelissaBA Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, do they need to be off the floor?
     
  9. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    You could put them on the floor or elevated, either will do. I had mine on the floor.
     
  10. mommyoftwo

    mommyoftwo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My orher hens did great with cover cat little boxes, and milk crates laying kn the ground.
     

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