Do I give broody hen eggs?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by NineAndCounting, Sep 17, 2016.

  1. NineAndCounting

    NineAndCounting Just Hatched

    Jun 26, 2016
    I have a hen that has decided to be broody. She's going on two weeks now of laying on a golf ball. I'm debating on giving her some fertilized eggs to hatch, or not. I'm not opposed to having another chick or two but we don't have a rooster so I would have to get some eggs from a friend. Is this a good thing to do? What about this time of year? Will it be too cold? I'm a first time chicken mommy and I want to do what's best. Haha Please help! Thank you!
  2. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2012

    If you are in an area where it stays swarm, I would say go ahead and hatch out some chicks. But if it gets cold where you are, these chicks will be hatching in October and it could be rough for them.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2016
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Weather should be fine pretty much anywhere in the lower 48.

    Do you have space for chicks? A broody with babies needs a bit more space than the simple math would leave you to believe.

    You don't have a rooster now, what would you do with any rooster chicks you hatch? Always good to have a plan in place for those guys.

    Those are the main things to consider.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    You'll need to decide if you want her to hatch out some chicks, and how you will 'manage' it.
    Do you have, or can you get, some fertile eggs?
    Do you have the space needed? She may need to be separated by wire from the rest of the flock.
    Do you have a plan on what to do with the inevitable males? Rehome, butcher, keep in separate 'bachelor pad'?
    If you decide to let her hatch out some fertile eggs, this is a great thread for reference and to ask questions.
    It a long one but just start reading the first few pages, then browse thru some more at random.

    If you don't want her to hatch out chicks, best to break her broodiness promptly.
    My experience went like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest, I put her in a wire dog crate with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop and I would feed her some crumble a couple times a day.

    I let her out a couple times a day(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two.
    Water nipple bottle added after pic was taken.

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