Broody Silkie

AnnB in Ma

Apr 2, 2021
My silkie has been sitting on 6 eggs now. We have candled them and are are fertilized and some look pretty ready. My concern and question is it was 9 eggs but she keeps breaking them open. She is in the coop in a nesting box with 12 others but because a couple were trying to get in the nesting box with her we’ve stapled chicken wire extending out of the nesting box to give her her own space, food and water. Has anyone else experienced their hens breaking their eggs and why do you think it happens? I’ve read possibly tight quarters but we’ve given her a bit more room but maybe not enough?


Premium Feather Member
14 Years
Feb 2, 2009
Southeast Louisiana
The only time I've had a problem with a broody hen's eggs breaking was when that specific egg was pretty thin-shelled. When I cleaned up it was easy to see that the shell was really thin.

When hens are getting on and off a nest to lay an egg they walk on the eggs, it's surprising to me that more don't get broken then so they must be pretty tough. But a thin-shelled one is at much more risk.


Apr 21, 2018
Wilmington, NC
To break most Silkie eggs takes substantial effort, like a beak peck. If you think that's odd, try to crack a Silkie egg to fry in the pan, and you'll understand what I mean!

Has this hen ever hatched eggs before? I doubt she's breaking them intentionally, but that could be the case; you'll simply have to observe what's going on as best you can. I suspect, however, that the disturbances from the other chickens has her moving on the eggs in ways she would not if she was isolated from them. We have a method of blocking off some of our nest boxes to keep the others out of the broody/chick-hatching nest box. Sounds like you've accomplished this with the wire.

Observe what happens through the day today and into tomorrow. I think you'll find that you don't have many more broken eggs. Also, don't forget to let your "mama" out of her nest box a couple of times per day to eat/drink/poo....

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