Do you isolate a broody hen?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kiya4jah, May 5, 2009.

  1. kiya4jah

    kiya4jah In the Brooder

    May 13, 2008
    I am going to let me Domique hatch, can I leave her in the coop or should I move her to her own pad until the chicks hatch? If so, should this be done at night?

  2. scooter147

    scooter147 Songster

    Jul 30, 2008
    Move her so she has her own private place.

    Otherwise, other hens will drive her from the nest or when she gets off the nest to eat, drink and poo other hens will likely get in her box and lay and when she comes back she will pick another nest box with eggs and of course the eggs you want to hatch will go bad.
    I simply put my broody's in a wire dog cage, works like a charm.
    I put foot and water in and clean up her poo once a day.
    MINDANAO DAVE likes this.
  3. JenniferJoIN

    JenniferJoIN Songster

    Sep 10, 2007
    Southern Indiana
    Definitely seperate her. I have a broody hen who went broody on April 5 and other hens got into her nest and cracked eggs, she kept adding eggs (she was trying to set on 18!) and it was a mess!

    I finally got her moved into an old cage I had, but if you do move her into a cage, do it at night. I tried to move her in during the day and she flipped out, but at night she was fine with it.
    MINDANAO DAVE likes this.
  4. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Definitely do all your dealings with her at night. Some hens are less determined than others, and might get spooked off their nest, never to return. I try to make the transition as seamless as possible. Sometimes you can just put a barricade around the hen right where she's made her nest, or move her inside the nest box to the secluded location. Or slide a cardboard box up under her & her nest and move it all together. But if that's going to be too much fuss, you can try moving her separately from the eggs. Often the sight of those egglings in the new nest box is enough to inspire the hen to get right back on them.

    I wish you & your hen the greatest of success! It's so fun to watch a Mama hen tending to her chicks.
    bonsaiherb likes this.
  5. bonsaiherb

    bonsaiherb In the Brooder

    Mar 25, 2018
    Sequim, WA
    Should I move a broody hen?

    I think this should be re-emphasized. She should be in her own separate housing unit for three different reasons.
    1. If you want her to hatch some eggs - you need to provide a separate space for her: a nest and perhaps a small run.
    2. If you want to end the broody stage you need to isolate her and basically put her into a separate quiet room for her to think things over. The PRISON Cell.
    3. Isolation will also prevent her from passing on the broody flu to the other gals.

    Although this is a genetic, in some respects consider her a bit deranged for sometimes she will egg-jack the other girls eggs, or sit upon NOTHING and generally be a useless poop in place. HOPEFULLY you will have eggs under her and she will do what nature intends (with a little bit more clean up care from you).
    I remember one eggless broody hen who would go into another's nest and in her state smash some of the eggs that she now intends to raise.
    If she is in shared housing she will think she is Godzilla Mom and steal some of the other eggs and attempt to raise them ALL. Think of one chicken sitting on a dozen or more eggs!!!

    Aside from this, if the other birds are a similar breed, say Cochin, Sussex or Silkie this may encourage them all to go on strike and go broody.

    I will build a special broody hen prison separate from the other birds until she hatches the eggs (I wish her to sit on) or stops being broody. She will have access to her own separate run but I want her nowhere near my other hens.

    IF you do NOT want her to sit on the eggs, provide no nest for her.

    Also, I agree about the moving time. She will be an ornery bird to move - do it at night and if you desire - move the eggs YOU want her to sit on.
    Also, sometimes you can even slip some young purchased chicks under her at night and she will be delighted with her accomplishment and save you the time and heat lamp of a brooder, eggs YOU want her to sit on.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Moving her prior to hatch is likely to break her broodiness, regardless of what time of day she is moved. In tight confines, I would make so other birds can not reach her on the nest.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by