Egg Eating Broody

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by skullgrrrl, Mar 23, 2015.

  1. skullgrrrl

    skullgrrrl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have had two 7-month old pullets go broody without much warning. The first (Silkie-Polish-Mille Fleur x) was happy to be transferred to a dog crate and sit on an assortment of eggs, which are due to hatch this week.

    The second, an OEG, sat for the first night and then seemed agitated and wanted out of the crate. I had put 5 OEG and 2 standard eggs under her. When I let her out of the crate all the OEG eggs were gone and only the 2 standard eggs remained. Why would eat them? (I haven't had any issues with egg eating) And will she continue?
     
  2. MySweetChickens

    MySweetChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is it possible the eggs were stolen by another animal if not it is likely she ate them due to boredom if so I usually do not let hens like that hatch eggs since from my experience they turn out to be bad mother but that's just my 2 cents definitely make sure another animal didn't get them though
     
  3. skullgrrrl

    skullgrrrl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a totally predator proof coop and she was in a dog crate within the coop - so there was no chance other birds/predators could have eaten the eggs. Maybe she wasn't quite ready to sit (even though she was sitting on eggs in the nest box and appeared to be broody) and then got hungry?
     
  4. MySweetChickens

    MySweetChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be possible she felt the need to pass a egg as well and wasn't broody was there food and water in the crate? If not it is possible she was pecking around for food
     
  5. skullgrrrl

    skullgrrrl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's funny that for all my other broodies I left food & water in the crate and they never touched them. It's been my experience that they only get off the eggs once a day when I pick them up & put them outside. So for this broody I didn't leave food & water and was going to do it today. She's back out in the yard with the other birds and not acting very broody at the moment.
     
  6. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    A truly broody hen would have settled down on the eggs and been happy.

    She probably walked back and forth over the eggs, breaking some of them. After they were broken, she would naturally eat them.

    Since she is less than a year old, personally, I would give her another chance at setting before giving up on her.
     
  7. skullgrrrl

    skullgrrrl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Moat of my broodies have given me plenty of warning signs: sitting in the nest box even though the eggs have been collected, cranky, picking fights with other hens, pecking me when I try to remove them from the nest, etc. The Silkie x I mentioned above gave none of those signs except for sitting on the nest one evening (I thought she was just laying an egg) and then the next night again. I put her on eggs and she was happy to sit.

    The OEG is about the same age as the Silkie x (7- 8 mths) and she was sitting on the eggs one night, and then the next. She was a bit cranky and squawky and when I tried to remove her she pecked me (a first) - so I read those as signs she was broody. Maybe she's just not full on broody. It seems to be contagious as several of my hens are cranky, squawky and seem discontented - which is unusual for them.

    I think she's too light (she's a super-Bantam and fits in the palm of my hand) to be able to break eggs by stepping on them.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2015
  8. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Broodiness is not really contagious. Broodiness is caused by hormones and genetics.

    But, I agree, in certain breeds and crosses, when one of them goes broody, the rest of the hens think it a good thing to do.
     
  9. justplainbatty

    justplainbatty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You know, It could be catchy in the way that sisters or very close girlfriends will have their periods at the same time. Just a thought....
     
  10. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens


    I have heard that train of thought discussed several times over the years, but have never experienced it.
     

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