I almost hate to ask this, but I would like to have some advice if possible. We have a chicken who has been sitting on eggs for 19 days. She is in a cage alone, with plenty of food and water. Tonight I was talking to her and noticed half an egg shell just outside her cage. I felt sure it had had a baby in it, so hubby came out and lifted her up....there was a dead baby off to the side of the nest. It looked mostly formed - was stretched out with some feathers on it, and there was a hole in the side of the head...as if it had been pecked. This is a first time mama who had been very broody for some time before I gave her some eggs to sit on. Is there any thought about what could have happened to this baby? I feel sure this must have happened today (or maybe yesterday, when the shell was out of sight to me). Do mama's kill their babies ever? I do know, or think I know, they can dispose of an egg that doesn't seem normal. I had two hens sitting last year...side by side in a good sized cage. Each one took one egg out from under her...moved it outside their boxes - one on the left side of her box and the other on the right side of her box..and obviously pecked a small hole in the egg. Nothing else..just two eggs sitting there, each with a little hole in it. I assumed they decided there was something wrong with these eggs. I'm a bit nervous now, for fear maybe this mama might do something to her chicks as they start to hatch. Does anyone have any idea about what is going on? I know this surely has happened to others before, but this is my first time with this. I guess I'll be sitting with her tomorrow and Wed., until I feel like things will be OK. She had too many eggs under her, I imagine. There were 10. But she seemed to cover them well so I just let it be. Thanks!