Does a broody hen go into lockdown?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Carolei, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. Carolei

    Carolei Songster

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    I have a broody sitting on four eggs in the main coop. She rarely leaves the nest, so I've been taking her off the nest once a day. I'm wondering at what point I should stop taking her off the nest as hatch day approaches. Also, I set the eggs under her on Sunday night, June 10. Does that mean that hatch will be on or around Sunday night 21 days later? At what point should I start checking for hatching? I'm going to have to move her when they hatch because she's up on a shelf that would be dangerous for chicks. Thanks!
     
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  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender

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    Eggs under a broody usually hatch on day 20-21. They will get off the nest without you making them. Generally it's early in the morning. Hens don't leave the nest once eggs start peeping and pipping. The hen will stay on the nest until usually the second day after the first hatches, so yes hens do go on sort of a lockdown.
     
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  3. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Crowing

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    I would move her now before the “lockdown” or the hatch and sequester her, might be safer. I made the mistake not moving one of my broody early enough, 3 of her newly hatched got killed during the nest fight with other hens trying to lay eggs.
     
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  4. dunnmom

    dunnmom Crowing

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    If there's a way to enclose her nest, I would do that. If not, it would be safest to move her before hatch.
     
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  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender

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    I have tried moving a hen before the hatch and all they do is panic. I usually make sure I'm around at hatch time. After a few to most are hatched many hens will move. Occasionally one refuses no matter what.
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    I discussed this issue with @Beekissed. Her response: a broody hen goes into a state that kind of resembles hibernation. Their kidney function decreases, their need for food and water decreases. She commented that the stench of the broody poo, it's dark color, and the lack of urates are all related to this system shut down. It's not unusual for them to sit tight on the nest for 2 - 3 days without moving. Bee never interferes with her broodies. They only come off the nest when they feel the need to. So, I followed Bee's recommendation. My hen spent several hours off the nest on day 1 and 2. Then she only came off every other day for a while. During the last week, it was almost every day. Her eggs started hatching exactly 21 days after being set. She did not come off the nest during the last 24 hours before hatch.
     
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  7. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Crowing

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    I have moved 5 broodies just in matter of few weeks this spring except one. Did it when it was totally dark with little red head light, everyone did good moving the eggs first then the hen last.
     

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  8. Chickygirl63

    Chickygirl63 Chirping

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    My hens sit on shelves with ramps that go floor to shelf and then shelf to. The shelf on the other side. I opened the door just in time to see a chick fall out of the nest roll down the ramp miss the other ramp hit the ground and take off running.. About four feet from nest to ground..horrified at first ...but then i realized the chick looked like a barrel rolling down the ramp..
     
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  9. Brahma Chicken5000

    Brahma Chicken5000 Araucana Addict

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    So I assume you never candled the eggs under the broody.
     
  10. Spartan22

    Spartan22 Crowing

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    I missed @Beekissed wisdom and gentleness. Is she still around?
     

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