Collecting eggs from broody, grouchy hens

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kbird, Apr 16, 2011.

  1. kbird

    kbird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 23, 2010
    Galena, Maryland
    I have 3 hens that are broody every day and spend the majority of the day and night in their nesting boxes. I collect their eggs every day because I don't want any chicks right now. When I approach them, they practically growl at me. The only way I can get the eggs is to use the handle end of a dog ball thrower. I put the handle under them and lift them up a little, then scoot the egg out. I then pick up the egg with the side of the ball thrower that the ball goes in. If I don't get the egg quickly, my broody girls will push the egg back under them. This method works pretty good for me, but I was wondering if I'm doing them any harm by lifting them up like this? I have looked at elbow-length heavy duty gloves, but they're really expensive!
  2. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Chicken Obsessed

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    I just put a flat surface, like a dustpan up next to them, then lift them up and reach under them, they will peck the pan but not be able to reach under it and get me.
  3. Pinky

    Pinky Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 15, 2008
    South GA
    You can put a bowl over their head and get the eggs if you're afraid of them attacking. I did do this and it worked. Now I just throw some food out and they go out.
  4. un-named

    un-named Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 15, 2010
    I enjoy getting pecked at.
  5. chickiedoo

    chickiedoo Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 28, 2010
    I have a silkie that keeps going broody and she sounds like a gremlin every time I go to collect the eggs. I was a little afraid of her pecking at me at first but now it doesnt bother me. And actually come to think of it she doesnt do it much anymore so maybe if you just put up with it and ignore it for a bit they'll catch on that it doesnt make any difference and will stop.
  6. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    May 8, 2007
    I greet her speaking softly when I go in. I usually gently pick her up and set her down somewhere else, to eat, drink and get rid of that broody poo. Since we free range, it's usually out in the grass. Normally, I bring a favorite treat for her, too. Then I collect eggs.
  7. mconro

    mconro Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 3, 2010
    I just use my garden gloves when I reach under my hens that are holding eggs. [​IMG] Yes, they growl and may peck but doesn't hurt with garden gloves.
  8. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2009
    I have one of my younger Isa Browns that is especially protective. If she is on the nest box when I go to gather eggs I can always anticipate a little pecking. I call her "The She-Devil." She would probably be a good mother if I had a rooster. It might be interesting to try giving her some fertilie turkey eggs and see if she would hatch those.

    I guess that Isa Browns and Rhode Island Reds (one of the Isa's two parent breeds) aren't known for beign very good broodies.
  9. kbird

    kbird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 23, 2010
    Galena, Maryland
    Thank you everyone for your replies and some good advice! Mrs. K, I like the dust pan suggestion and will try that. I tried today to get under my broody girls with garden-type gloves to collect eggs. They all pecked at me and it DID hurt, so I'm not brave enough to endure the pecking...LOL! My concern with using the handle of a ball thrower was that poking around under my girls could cause injury to them. I guess I just worry too much.

    I'm that way with my dog, cat and horses too. I'm sure the girls are a lot more tough than I give them credit for [​IMG]
  10. oldchickenlady

    oldchickenlady Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 9, 2010
    Cabot, AR
    I think using a ball thrower is a brilliant idea. None of mine have gone broody yet, but I have one of those ball throwers and will try your method of egg retrieval when and if it ever happens!

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