Dark Cornish Hen gone LAZY?

MTtroutwithwings

Songster
12 Years
Jul 10, 2007
490
2
141
Montana Country
A few weeks ago, I assumed my DCH had gone broody as she would not leave her nesting box all day, I'd have to physically put her out to get her to eat but when I did she ate/drank fine & scratched around for a few minutes then come back in and sit in her box again the rest of the day/night. I tried putting some fake eggs under her to test her and after three days I found her in another nesting box so I deemed this experiment unreliable. Then I took the eggs out if "her" box, she later was back in it. She does not squawk at me either like a broody hen does, just buries her beak into her chest feathers like she was being shy. With all of this going on, I noticed she'd stop laying shortly after this behavior started. To date she is still not laying, still sits around all day, periodically would go out on her own to eat (when I don't put her out first) she eat & acts healthy when she is out so what's up with this lazy behavior? And why the drop in egg production? She, like all my other girls are 8 1/2 mos. old. Any suggestions to this odd behavior?


Thanks,
Lori
 

silkiechicken

Staff PhD
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
13 Years
Jan 25, 2007
21,494
963
393
Everett WA/Corvallis OR
If she is still broody, she is waiting for the nesting material to hatch and unless you break her, she can go on for months and months. If she is broken, or gets a chick, she will start to lay in a month or two. Setting for excessive times isn't really the best for her health, so giving her a few chicks or breaking her would be the best thing to do.
 

MTtroutwithwings

Songster
12 Years
Jul 10, 2007
490
2
141
Montana Country
Quote:How Ironic! Well I just happen to have lots of eggs in two stages of incubation, since she typically lays smaller eggs, I could pop a couple of banty eggs under her? They due the 26th. Or I have 1 small mystery egg due to hatch in two days, think I should do that one for the shorter duration time?
 

silkiechicken

Staff PhD
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
13 Years
Jan 25, 2007
21,494
963
393
Everett WA/Corvallis OR
If she is still sitting tight, go ahead and give her the egg ready to hatch! That way you don't have to deal with raising a lone chick before the others make it! Perfect
 

MTtroutwithwings

Songster
12 Years
Jul 10, 2007
490
2
141
Montana Country
Quote:no lone chicks here, I hatched out two chicks yesterday & last night and then there are the three due Sunday, 2 lg & the 1 small one then a dozen assorted banties for the 26th. I'm going to be busy with babies for awhile! Do you recommend because of the rest of my adult flock that I should remove the baby once it hatches for it's protection or isolate both and leave baby with my DCH to fulfill her motherly instincts?

P.S. silkiechicken, Sorry for all the questions, I know you need to study, but your very helpful!
 
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silkiechicken

Staff PhD
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
13 Years
Jan 25, 2007
21,494
963
393
Everett WA/Corvallis OR
Either way as long as the nest is on ground level. If you have lots of chicks, you could even sneak one of your current day olds under her at night and see how she does in the morning. I never took my broody out of the main coop with the others, and with just one chick, she was able to do protect her baby just fine. The rooster wouldn't even look at her and she attacked a hawk twice that was trying to eat her only chick. Haven't had a hawk problem since.

Don't worry, my lack of studying is my own fault! lol
 

MTtroutwithwings

Songster
12 Years
Jul 10, 2007
490
2
141
Montana Country
Really...not a good time to be a mod, we're distracting you!

Egg is already in place, she took it with open "wings"?
I candled quickly to be sure it was still a good one, alls good there...only problem is her box is not ground level and can't be lowered but I do have deep pine shavings underneath so if the chick were to tumble out, it be like a kid jumping off a barn loft into a haystack!

I'll keep you posted thru PM.
Thanks!
 

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