First time broody hen

Jbusch

In the Brooder
Jul 14, 2020
25
22
42
Hi, so a couple weeks ago one of our hens (Ninja) got broody. Around the same time another of our hens (Lavender) started laying and her eggs were fertilized so we decided to put them under Ninja. Everyday when Lavender layed another egg we stuck them under Ninja. I'm really worried though because since they were all put under her at different times, I'm not sure when they will hatch. Also, since it's Ninja's first time hatching chicks I'm afraid she might kill them. I'm not sure what to do. Help!
 

Nnyuu

Songster
Mar 23, 2021
128
364
136
Southeastern Pennsylvania
Hi, so a couple weeks ago one of our hens (Ninja) got broody. Around the same time another of our hens (Lavender) started laying and her eggs were fertilized so we decided to put them under Ninja. Everyday when Lavender layed another egg we stuck them under Ninja. I'm really worried though because since they were all put under her at different times, I'm not sure when they will hatch. Also, since it's Ninja's first time hatching chicks I'm afraid she might kill them. I'm not sure what to do. Help!
How many days from the first egg to the last you added to her clutch? Once the older chicks need to go out for food and water she might end up just ditching the rest as lost causes. If that happens you might need to use an incubator and reintroduce them later.
 

yakitori

Crowing
Jun 22, 2020
2,066
4,512
351
New York
yep, you’ll have a staggered hatch. Next time you can collect them over the course of 1 week and put them under her all at once.

What will generally happen is, she will sit about 2 more days after the first one hatches. That’s when the first one needs to be taken care of, and she will eventually abandon the other eggs and get up to take care of him.

If you want her to keep sitting, you can set up a brooder and take the chicks from her as they hatch, she may or may not accept them back later. Or you can let her sit until she wants to leave, and incubate the remaining wggs yourself. Again, she may or may not accept the babies back.

The one issue you may have if you do let her raise them is varying levels of mobility. A 3 day old chick is much more active than a 2 day chick, which is much more active than a 1 day old chick, and so on. the younger ones will tend to have trouble catching up to the older ones. I would keep them all confined to a relatively small area until they can all keep up with each other, before letting them roam a bigger space.

about her harming the babies, most likely it wont happen, but keep a wary eye out around the hatch time of the eldest, and have a brooder set up ready just in case.
 

Jbusch

In the Brooder
Jul 14, 2020
25
22
42
How many days from the first egg to the last you added to her clutch? Once the older chicks need to go out for food and water she might end up just ditching the rest as lost causes. If that happens you might need to use an incubator and reintroduce them later.
I think the first egg we got was monday june 28 and the last one was today. Should I stop putting them under?
 

Jbusch

In the Brooder
Jul 14, 2020
25
22
42
yep, you’ll have a staggered hatch. Next time you can collect them over the course of 1 week and put them under her all at once.

What will generally happen is, she will sit about 2 more days after the first one hatches. That’s when the first one needs to be taken care of, and she will eventually abandon the other eggs and get up to take care of him.

If you want her to keep sitting, you can set up a brooder and take the chicks from her as they hatch, she may or may not accept them back later. Or you can let her sit until she wants to leave, and incubate the remaining wggs yourself. Again, she may or may not accept the babies back.

The one issue you may have if you do let her raise them is varying levels of mobility. A 3 day old chick is much more active than a 2 day chick, which is much more active than a 1 day old chick, and so on. the younger ones will tend to have trouble catching up to the older ones. I would keep them all confined to a relatively small area until they can all keep up with each other, before letting them roam a bigger space.

about her harming the babies, most likely it wont happen, but keep a wary eye out around the hatch time of the eldest, and have a brooder set up ready just in case.
thank you! How should I confine them to a small space?
 

yakitori

Crowing
Jun 22, 2020
2,066
4,512
351
New York
thank you! How should I confine them to a small space?
Where is she right now?

Having her nesting box in a crate, or a large brooder box inside the coop or other secure area will help. you can move her after she starts taking care of her chicks, since that’s when she’ll stop imprinting on the nesting spot, and imprint on her babies instead.
 

Jbusch

In the Brooder
Jul 14, 2020
25
22
42
Where is she right now?

Having her nesting box in a crate, or a large brooder box inside the coop or other secure area will help. you can move her after she starts taking care of her chicks, since that’s when she’ll stop imprinting on the nesting spot, and imprint on her babies instead.
she's been in the coop in her nesting box. I didn't know that we were suppose to move her to a brooding box until today.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom