can't find answers I need about broody hen.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by lilmama, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. lilmama

    lilmama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello,

    Could some one point me to a forum question that deals with hens sitting on infertile eggs? We only have hens, eggs are for sure infertile. I am guessing she is broody as she will not get out of the nesting box for 2 days. We removed all the eggs out from under her and put her up on the roost tonight. Not sure if she will stay there. I am hoping we did the right thing. Any input appreciated as I have read they can get ill from being broody and not eating/drinking.
     
  2. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

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    Yep, you are doing the right thing. Keep taking the eggs and keep removing her from the nest box. She'll get the picture sooner or later.
    Good luck.
     
  3. tnchickenut

    tnchickenut It's all about the Dels!

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    Not only take the eggs everyday but lift her up (she won't really get you) and move her. I have 10 broodies right now and I only allow some to sit... the rest I have to do this to, everyday... all day... every day. lol.

    If you get tired of it or need a good excuse for babies you can either buy fertile (or get some free from friends) eggs OR buy chicks. Chicks are tricky... sometimes they aren't fooled and sometimes they are. It's best to sneak in there and put chicks under (even just one is fine) her at night and TAKE THE OTHER EGGS. If you don't take the eggs when you do this, she will continue to try to hatch for a few more days.

    You will know right away if she will accept the baby. Just wait a minute and the baby will cry "I'm cold" and either she will take it or peck it (dont' worry... one peck wont' break the skin but that is your sign that you need to set up the brooder because she don't want it)

    You can try to break her of sitting, but it takes persistance. You're competeing for "most stubborn" with the hen and you can't let her win!
     
  4. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You don't really need to worry that much about a hen going broody getting ill. It's nature, it's what they're meant to do. Since you have no fertile eggs, go ahead and do what you're doing. Some hens will give up after a few days, some persist. Our Billina is stubborn and will stay broody for about a month at a time. I watch her weight to make sure she's not losing too much, but let her do what makes her happiest. She's done this twice already this spring/summer.
     
  5. cybercat

    cybercat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If she is real insitant you can use the old breeders method of dunking her up to her neck in a bucket of water. If it is cool that will be better for temp dictates brooding sometimes. Warm temps hens go broody when it gets cooler they stop. Another method is to put her in a wire cage up in the sir and have a fan under neath.
     
  6. lilmama

    lilmama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thanks so much. I have to say, you all are so wonderful and how much I appreciate having this forum. Truly, I could not have had chickens without it!

    And out of curiosity: what would happen with the other hens if I put fertile eggs in there? I mean, when they hatched, wouldn't the other hens pick on the chicks? They are in a run 1/2 day and free range 1/2 day and I don't have another place to put the broody hen.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2011
  7. tnchickenut

    tnchickenut It's all about the Dels!

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    Quote:No. I have hatched and raised babies with the whole flock... roosters and all... they will only get a warning peck if they go to the wrong momma... but that is not a hurtful/hateful thing... it's a "You don't belong to me now go" thing. The rooster is wonderful with them as well.

    I would do it. I would put fertile eggs under her, the others in the flock will not be a issue. The first week, the babies barely come out from their mom, and by then the rest of the flock is used to seeing a bit of them and hearing them... it's not the big deal you think. Only once have I had chicks killed in a flock like that and it was the mom that killed them... I caught her doing it to the second chick. BUT BUT BUT that was a unusual situation... I had two broodies on the same nest... so there was some fighting and confusion because of that. I pulled the rest of the eggs and the non-killer mom and put them in a dog crate (they are bantams) and let her hatch the rest there.

    Most often they will be very good about accepting new babies. It's nature. New babies come into wild flocks without broody pens... right?


    ETA.... and I let my momma and babies range all day too... not lost one. The cat about lost a eye from the momma hen, but I haven't lost a chick to anything yet. lol
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2011
  8. seramasrus

    seramasrus Out Of The Brooder

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    Not sure if it really works or not, but my grandmother who raised chickens all of her life would take a bucket or something and fill it with water and then add ice to it. Then she would take her broody hens and put them just far enough that their belly's would be down in the water. She would hold them there just for a few mins then take them out and put them into a cage. From what I remembered, in just a few days, she would turn them back into the pens with the other layers. I raise bantams and never have tried it, so not for sure if it is a for sure thing or not. It may be something that some one might want to put to the test and see if it really works or not.
     
  9. lilmama

    lilmama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    where would I get fertile eggs?? I wouldn't consider but she is so determined she is sitting on "nothing" this morning.
     

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