1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Does hen eat while sitting on eggs

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by pondereggs, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. pondereggs

    pondereggs New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Nov 7, 2010
    We just started an egg farm and have a hen laying on about 10 eggs. It does not seem that the hen is eating while she is laying on the eggs, is this normal?

    Thanks
    Pondereggs
     
  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Some will get off the nest long enough to eat once or twice a day. Others won't. The only time one of my girls went broody, I would set her outside at least once per day to encourage her to eat, drink, and poo. She'd take about 10 or 15 minutes, and then run back to the nest. I also hand fed her scraps/treats pretty much every day. She still lost a ton of weight in those few weeks, and went into a molt directly afterwards (I suppose due to the physical stress).
     
  3. pgpoultry

    pgpoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,291
    16
    191
    Oct 16, 2009
    Wales
    Normally a broody hen will come out once or twice daily for a short period to eat, drink and eliminate. Just occasionally they don't. If your hen is not leaving the nest at all, then once or twice daily lift her carefully from the eggs and offer her food and water. Usually the hen will eat and drink (plus do a pretty huge poop) and then make her way quickly back to the eggs.

    One of my hens has to be manually lifted every day when she is broody as she will not get off the eggs herself, but all the rest come out daily of their own accord up until about day 19/20 when they stay put for 48 hours or so.
     
  4. pondereggs

    pondereggs New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Nov 7, 2010
    Thanks for the advice. We put some food and water next to where she was laying and she ate some food. This is our first so we were afraid that she was getting sick or that it was not normal. Been about 14 days now, so we should be seeing chicks soon.

    Thanks again
    Pondereggs
     
  5. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,873
    14
    191
    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    [​IMG]

    I think your question has been answerd, but I wanted to share what I do with my broody girls--especially the ones that barely come off the nest. I scramble an egg for them a few times a week and feed it to them while they're on the nest. It's a good high protien food that even the most tranced out broody will eat. I think doing this helps keep them in better condition while they're broody.
     
  6. kano

    kano Chillin' With My Peeps

    313
    2
    123
    Aug 24, 2008
    Santiago de Chile
    Quote:I don't recommend this, because the hen will eat and drink without leaving the nest, and this is very necessary, because of the poo elimination.(result: dirty eggs) She also needs to elongate her muscles and even take dust baths. So the food and water at the other side of the coop. A little fresh air is not going to kill the embryos.
     
  7. Surehatch

    Surehatch Chillin' With My Peeps

    466
    1
    111
    Nov 16, 2009
    Georgia
    [​IMG]
     
  8. joebryant

    joebryant Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:I don't recommend this, because the hen will eat and drink without leaving the nest, and this is very necessary, because of the poo elimination.(result: dirty eggs) She also needs to elongate her muscles and even take dust baths. So the food and water at the other side of the coop. A little fresh air is not going to kill the embryos.

    Interesting! I'd never considered some/most of those points.
     
  9. rosebuds

    rosebuds Out Of The Brooder

    30
    0
    22
    Aug 13, 2012
    Farnham VA
    My Coop
    i am new at this too got 2 hens broody on nest 1 with 4 eggs and 1 with 9.they will not eat or leave the nest.i offer food and water they eat very little.i am worried they are going to get sick.
     
  10. Oletadarlene

    Oletadarlene New Egg

    9
    1
    9
    Jul 14, 2015
    Grand Ledge, Mi
    We're hsving same problem. Our first brooder. She is not eating. Though we have set out foid and water by her. I guess we wil. Try lifting her off next to see is she'll est and poop.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by