first time owner of a broody chicken

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by mackenziesmomma, Nov 9, 2008.

  1. mackenziesmomma

    mackenziesmomma Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2008
    For the past few days, every time I have gone out to feed/ water/ get eggs, there has been a chicken in the nest. At first I thought it was a different chicken each time who just happened to be laying an egg... but now I am thinking it is the same hen.

    There are quite a few eggs in the nest. Should I just let her sit on them awhile? How long? Will she get up and eat/ drink? What about the other chickens and rooster in the coop- will they leave her alone? There are 3 nests for the 5 hens but they all like the one she is sitting on.

    tia for any insight!

    [​IMG] Jennifer
     
  2. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    Oct 13, 2007
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    Does she "growl" when you put your hand close?

    You can let her sit on them, they take about 3 weeks to hatch, if your other hens keep laying in the nest things are going to get confusing. You either need to mark the eggs she has and remove others on a daily basis (risking you hands to do so [​IMG] ) or you can close her up and put a little fence or enclosure around her, you do need to make sure she has food and water - and will need to clean out the broody poop.

    She will get up to eat and drink, probably once a day and she'll poop at the same time (nasty poop)

    If you close her in - the other hens will get the message and lay somewhere else. You can open up her enclosure once the chicks have hatched. Generally, from my experience mom is well armed to protect her babies and she'll do so - she will use that nest box as home base till the chicks are old enough to follow her up to the roost. Make sure the nest box is very close to the ground so babies don't fall out and can't get back in.

    I'll look for my pic when I enclosed my broody a while ago.
     
  3. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    Oct 13, 2007
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    [​IMG]

    I used those squares from a wire shelving kit and zip tied them together. The piece of cardboard ontop is to prevent the other chickens from pooping in her food and water which was under that.
     
  4. mackenziesmomma

    mackenziesmomma Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2008
    thanks so much for the reply.

    There are SO MANY eggs in the nest- I don't have a clue who laid what egg. She can't even sit on all of them because there are so many! Ekk! What should I about all the eggs? Should I just let her sit on all of them and throw out the eggs that don't hatch in a few weeks?

    She is very mean- you can't get near her in the nest without getting pecked.

    I have a separate pen that I can put her in by herself. Should I do that? None of the others are bothering her... she is mean! [​IMG]

    I really appreciate your response! thanks again!
     
  5. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

    11,973
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    Oct 13, 2007
    California
    Hmmmmmmmmmmmm - if she can't fit on all the eggs, it would be best to take some out now - so they don't get rolled under or out and get cold etc... you will risk having some that are a few days later into development. Mom will remain on the eggs about 3 days or so after the first one hatches. (my personal experience)

    If they others aren't bothering her - leave her, you risk her gettig up and leaving the nest if you move her whole nest somewhere else.


    Put some gloves on, pull out some eggs (throw them away - don't even look) I'd mark the others, write a number or letter on them so you know there is only 1 A or only 1, 1 etc.
    You can leave them for a week and then try candle a few to check development. Keep a little note of each egg number and what it looked like on day 7 (or so - you won't know exact day they're on) then you can candle again in another week and check again - if you have development in all the eggs, don't remove any - the only ones you need to remove are those with a clear blood ring - you might have to look up pictures if you've never seen what that looks like.
    Don't toss out any eggs before your 2 week mark.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2008
  6. mackenziesmomma

    mackenziesmomma Out Of The Brooder

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    thanks for the reply! I need to find armored gloves because she is going to attack [​IMG]
     
  7. cthrash1

    cthrash1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2008
    Somerset, KY
    I wish you luck on your hatch and on the extra egg removal. I was lucky enough to have a really sweet broody the only thing she ever did was growl at me while I'd pet her at the beginning and now she just sits there and doesn't make a peep...Had to move her whole nest because it was up high and my Jap kept laying more eggs in it. Her routine was to go out every morning for her busines, food and water and return to her nest, so I just made sure before I'd leave that she was finding her nest...Took her a couple of days but she finally started to go in the new one without my help.
     
  8. Griffox

    Griffox Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 26, 2008
    Harrodsburg, KY
    My broody is sweet, as well. I'd hate to have a nasty one.

    My hens all lay in the same nest, too. Finally I moved my broody and her eggs to a lower nest since the eggs are nearing hatch time.

    I let her fly up into her old nest and get a good look around so it sunk in that her eggs were not there. She got all panicked; it was really pitiful. Then I picked her up and showed her where her new nest was and once she saw the eggs she fluffed up and sat down. I thought, "well, that was easy." When I came back to check about five minutes later, though, she was back on the old nest, so I just picked her up again and put her in the new nest. The second time it stuck and she's been there since. So, if you do move her, be sure to check back often until you're sure she's going to stay.

    If you dare, move her out of the nest and check for smelly eggs. I thought my hen would kick out the bad eggs, but one exploded under her today...Disgusting!!!

    Wildsky, funny you mentioned the nasty poop. I have noticed that my hen was pooping huge piles of smelly stuff right after leaving the nest. I thought it was just her...didn't realize it was a broody thing. I was already reeling from the rotten egg, then she pooped and I thought I was going to pass out. haha
     

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