Broody or not???


In the Brooder
May 1, 2016
I am fairly new at raising hens and JUST hens for their eggs. I have a young (maybe 5 month old) hen that was doing fine, laying her eggs and than totally stopped laying and just sits and sits all day long until I lift her out. She will than get water, eat a little, Run around for about 15 minutes outside the coop and will than proceed to go BACK on her nest of choice and sit and sit and sit with never laying an egg. She appears completely fine. This has been going on at LEAST 4 weeks. Not sure what to do about this girl!
Welcome to BYC!

Yup, that hen be broody! Has she plucked feathers from her breast and is she grouchy? These are other indicators of broodiness. You now have several options: let her sit and hatch eggs, break her broody spell or just let nature run it's course. I would recommend either letting her incubate and hatch them or break her. It's not healthy for a hen to sit on nothing for long periods of time. They often lose weight and sometimes even get sick.

Here are several great links on how to deal with a broody.

Best of luck!
She has no eggs since she has been broody, and there are no roosters here to hatch one.
how would I break her broody spell? I keep removing her from her coop and she walks around for about 10 minutes and goes right back onto her eggless nest.
Place the hen in a wire bottom cage with nothing but food and water for a few days. It's a very effective method.
If you don't want her to hatch out chicks, best to break her broodiness promptly.
My experience went like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest, I put her in a wire dog crate with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop and I would feed her some crumble a couple times a day.

I let her out a couple times a day(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two.
Water nipple bottle added after pic was taken.
Yes, like the others have said, the best way to break her is to separate her from any kind of nest and put her in a wire cage for a day or more.

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