can broodiness make chickens sick?


In the Brooder
10 Years
Apr 22, 2009
I'm on day 3 of a brooding cochin and I worry that she's not eating or drinking enough. I would be sick if she died. She's one of my favorite birds. I put some banana and grapes by her nest today. When I pick her up now she's pretty limp- not fighting me at all. Should I be forcing her out into the yard with the other chickens during free range time? What should I do to keep her healthy?
I have heard that some chickens are so committed to brooding that they don't eat or drink! My vet says that they will almost always eat and drink when they get hungry/thirsty enough. But it sounds like your girl has gone into what I've heard called "Brooding hypnosis". You may have to force her off the nest to break the spell! Otherwise you could lose her!
If she is a good broody she will never let you catch her off the nest. Watch her from a very far distance to see her true behavior.

And don't put food, water or treats near her. That will encourage her to stay on the nest. Broodiys will lose a little weight while sitting a nest and that is normal.

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