Day 20 Broody Hen can't stand up, any advice?


In the Brooder
8 Years
Jul 2, 2011

Sorry, not sure if this is the right forum for this. My broody girl is on day 20, she has only been out a couple of times (poop as evidence) and I have kept feed and water by her at all times, so she has not gone hungry/thirsty. However this morning, as I walked down the garden, there was a great flurry of feathers and she landed on the grass just outside the hutch she has been in. She is pecking furiously at the grass, but can't seem to stand up. Should I do anything? She seems to have lost circulation, or should I just leave her to it?

I kind of mean, should I pick her up and massage her legs, or will this distress her away from her egg - yes, just the one, if its not a loaded one, I don't know what to do next.

Just been to look and she is back in again, don't know how! Will this be a problem if she hatches the chick?
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Many broodies will keep their bodies low to the ground. They do this when chicks hatch so the babies can go under them, so maybe she's just getting ready. I'd keep an eye on her though. If she's on day 20 her babies should be hatching today if they are chicken eggs she's sitting on. (both my broodies have hatched out chicks early)
She has rolled/moved the egg out into the day part of the hutch, yes its a chicken egg, and is sitting on it again so I can't see
, will it just start to hatch under her? If in fact it is a fertilized egg. Never done this before, but I can already see, i made a big mistake only getting one fertilised egg. Congrats on yours by the way.
Sometimes the egg doesn't exactly hatch on "the day", but is a day or so late, so you should make allowance for this. If it doesn't hatch, she may continue to sit on it, waiting. You might try to remove the egg, if that happens, and replace it with a new baby chick under her. (Or two.) But you will need to watch closely when you do this to make sure she doesn't attempt to injure the babies. We have done this, so far, without incident, but there is the potential for it to go wrong. We have also added more chicks under a hen that hatched out only a few, on several occasions, and they have simply raised their "skirts" and the new little ones just beat feet to get under "mom". Everything went as it should, but that doesn' t mean it will always be so. Good luck.
If it's fertile and hasn't quit, it will hatch on it's own under her. If by tonight it doesn't hatch, then pull it out from under her and shine a flashlight into the egg. If it's a viable egg, you should see all dark inside the egg.

If it isn't fertile or it quit, then you may want to get a chick or two for her and slip them under her at night. Get as close to a day old chick as you can.
Your advice is all great and i will retain the info for the future but I am afraid I have no access to chicks, I am way out in the country side with 6 hens and no cockeril, will she not just give up if I remove the egg? I will check with a torch and give her a couple more days - hey, maybe under all those dark feathers, its happeneing already...

whoops, in case you all think I have one sandwich short of a picnic, the egg she is sitting on was donated to me by a friend who has a rooster - I don't need the 'birds and the bees' chat
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