Found a broody! To move or not to move?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by mychookschick, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. mychookschick

    mychookschick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2009
    Hello everyone!

    One of my GLW hens went missing some time ago (I can't really remember how long), I assumed that something had eaten her (I free range my birds). But just today, before I had let the hens out, I was feeding the horses and I heard a chicken. Then I saw her. I recounted in the coop to make sure that she hadn't just gotten out, but NO! She was the one that I lost! After searching for a long while we found her sitting on a nest of 6 eggs! (and another that was broken). Well, now I am concerned that something WILL eat her, at night, and am wondering if I should attempt to move her or not? I tried to candle, but it is too sunny, I will have to wait until dark. But, I am fairly sure that she is a ways along, we shaded the eggs and tried to candle again, and I think that her wait is almost over. Should I risk moving her? Or let her be?

    More info to come as soon as it falls dark!
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Flock Master Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    I've moved two broodys. The first one accepted it just fine. She had been broody for less than a week, I moved her at night, and there was no problem at all. The second one had been missing for over a week, and like you, finally discovered her sitting on a nest. I also moved her at night. It was a disaster. When I went to check on her the next morning, she had quit the nest, was flying around the shed I put her in, and several of them had broken. I didn't have an incubator at the time, so I just let them go. She was on 13 eggs, and most of them were fertile. I think next time - with that one, anyway - I'll try to find a way to secure her where she is instead of moving her. Is there any way you can to that with your broody?
  3. oesdog

    oesdog Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2010
    I moved a broody last year. - She was sat on eggs but one exploded all over her back end. I took her out of the nest and washed her bum and cleaned the nest and put the remaining eggs in a clean nest box. She had a complete fit and was very worried about the eggs. She went back to sitting imediately. We got 4 live chicks out of the 6 remaining eggs. One didn;t hatcha nd the other had a none viable chick ( Deformed) .

    Personally I would try to secure your girl where she is. She is quite far along and it would be too much of a risk. Don;t keep messing with the eggs though. She knows what she is doing and usually if a chick died in the egg they can tell and they usually dump them out.

    As for preditors - she has kept herself safe so far. But little chicks will be hard to keep safe. Try to find a way to secure the area. Honestly it is best for her. And don;t keep disturbing her as you run the risk of an abandonment. The fact you found her must have already unnerved her as her intention was to hide aways to do this from the start! Some hens are like that while others just love you to be hands on all the time! Each one is different.

  4. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    If you can secure her where she is, do it! I had a duck hen hide out to sit, and we rediscovered her under almost exactly the same conditions. I thought, 'Well, she's been fine this far, she'll probably be fine another few days." That night, she disappeared. I finished the eggs in the incubator and most of them hatched out, but obviously that doesn't bring the hen back to me.

    If you can't secure her where she is, and you have an incubator, I'd try to move her for sure. If it fails, you can always finish them indoors and at least you haven't lost your girl.

    In fact, I would attempt it anyway if there's no way to secure her. It's just too dangerous otherwise.

    Good luck!
  5. mychookschick

    mychookschick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2009
    Thanks for the info guys! I can't really think of any way to secure her where she is, but she has been missing for at least two weeks, so I figure that she can fend for herself. What I am really worried about is her babies. Do you think that she would reject them if I moved her and them to the coop after they hatched?
  6. bobbieschicks

    bobbieschicks Chicken Tender

    Jun 24, 2011
    King George, VA
    My Coop
    What has she been eating and drinking? She must have been getting her nurioushment somehow. If you start securing her you will have to provide feed/water.

    As far as abandoning her chicks - I doubt she would. She will most likely attack anyone or anything that attempts to come between her & her babies.

    My Smokey went from a quiet, sweet chicken to a mad raving lunatic momma pullet. If you even look at her chicks she will attack! My poor Silkie runs for her life after having brushed up against one of the babies, much to Smokey's dismay.
  7. mychookschick

    mychookschick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2009
    Hahaha! Umm, I believe that she has been getting off the nest during the day when the coop is open and stealing food and water from there. That is my best guess. Otherwise, she would have to be eating grass. But I think that she is getting food from our coop, because this morning when I found her, she was on her way to the coop (which wasn't open yet).
  8. mychookschick

    mychookschick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2009
    Hey guys! Just wanted to post pics of the broody that I found! She doesn't really have a name since I can't tell her apart from her sisters, but we could give her one for the purpose of this thread, if you guys have suggestions! Here she is on her not-so-fancy nest:


    And a shot showing where she chose to make her nest! LOL By candling her eggs it looks like they are due ANYTIME now! Yay! I will have chicks sooner than I thought! LOL
  9. B J Hopkins

    B J Hopkins Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 14, 2012
    Central Missouri
    Very pretty Momma chicken!
  10. mychookschick

    mychookschick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 28, 2009
    Thanks! I am hoping that she laid most of the eggs herself! Although, they will be mixed with BO, as that is the only breed of roo that I have...

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