1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Broody mama sitting on 4 eggs.

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by cruisnmoma, Feb 13, 2015.

  1. cruisnmoma

    cruisnmoma Out Of The Brooder

    55
    0
    39
    Dec 14, 2013
    This is a first for us! My girls are just about 1 yr old. We landed up with a rooster in the group. One of the girls has gone broody and is sitting on 4 eggs. I am trying to find info on what to do and what to expect. If this is something all ready covered I would be so gratful for a link to the post. I know it takes 21 days, but no sure about much else.
    How do we know if the eggs are really fertilized?

    do we have to worry about the other girls or the rooster hurting the babies if and when they come?

    should we pull her out once in a while to make sure she is eating.

    So far I have been going out a few times a day to give her water and something to eat. I have not seen her outside, but I am not out there all the time.

    Not the end of the world if this does not turn out, but we are very excited to see what happens!

    Just looking for the best outcome and want to do it right.
     
  2. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,817
    241
    188
    Aug 10, 2013
    Oregon
    Good Evening and welcome to the wonderful world of Broody Hens!!! I have already had one so far this year hatch out 6... :)

    To check for fertility I always break open a few test eggs, you are going to look for the bulls eye..

    [​IMG]


    If you are unsure you can candle after day 7, here is what you might see if done properly and in total darkness

    [​IMG]


    I never worry really about the rooster and other hens hurting the chicks, any hen worth her weight will protect them, if your unsure after they hatch you can always move momma and babies to a more secure location.

    Hens will typically get up once a day to eat, drink and poop... Mine are off the nest for up to an hour.. I try and train my girls by completely blocking off their nest and leaving them until around 3pm when most of the other hens have already laid their eggs, then I go and remove the blockade and broody gets up shortly after, before I turn in for the night I close her back in.
    It is not recommended that you feed and water her, place her food and such at least 5 feet from her so it will entice her to get up... believe you me, broody poo stinks bad and fouling the nest is gross.. You typically wont see her get off or go back, it is ingrained in those hens to hide their nest. Most people move the broody to a more secluded location, I have one hen that is ok with being moved, the rest hate it so I devised a door of sorts on the nesting boxes they like to broody in.
    The best thing us humans can do is let them do what they have done for centuries... Good luck and keep us updated!!
     
  3. cruisnmoma

    cruisnmoma Out Of The Brooder

    55
    0
    39
    Dec 14, 2013
    Thanks for the info! We have had broody girls before the rooster, so we know how to break the brood for sure. Only one of them ever went broody. Next Fri we will check the eggs. Hope there is something there. We have 6 girls, one does not lay anymore, and one is not laying right now. She is not a good winter layer, but the other 4 are consistent, and one of them the rooster doesn't seem to mess with much. We hope she started sitting on them soon enough. So far she is fine with the nesting box in the coop. We have 4 boxes. The other girls are coming in a laying. From what I can tell there has been no issues.They are using the other boxes. if i see any signs of problems it is easy enough to block her off so the others do not bother her.
     
  4. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,817
    241
    188
    Aug 10, 2013
    Oregon
    I would make sure and draw a ring around the eggs she is sitting on, I use a black sharpi, that way if by chance another hen does lay an egg in the nest I know which one is the new egg..

    Fun fun fun... I incubate a lot but always give my broodys a few just because its fun!
     
  5. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,817
    241
    188
    Aug 10, 2013
    Oregon
    Also, I typically will candle the eggs one time just to make sure what she has is all fertile and growing, after that I don't mess with her... My first time with a broody I didn't know anything and when the chicks started hatching I lifted her to check and when I sat her back down she darn near crushed an almost hatched chick, my sister in law did end up crushing a chick that way and killing it..

    Best to not mess with her if it can be helped... When I remove the eggs for candling I just put my hand under her and slightly lift her I remove them all, candle and then gently replace them the same way, don't put them under her breast but rather on each side of her breast, she will move them where she wants them.
     
  6. cruisnmoma

    cruisnmoma Out Of The Brooder

    55
    0
    39
    Dec 14, 2013
    First thing we did was mark them so we can keep track of them.
     
  7. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,817
    241
    188
    Aug 10, 2013
    Oregon
    Sounds like you got this covered just fine! [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by