Getting her to go Broody

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by SarahFair, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. SarahFair

    SarahFair Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2008
    Monroe, Ga
    I bought a cochin hen in hopes that she would "adopt" eggs and sit on them for when I get my Black Jersey Giants.
    I got her back in early october at about 8 - 10 weeks of age.
    Well after a good month and a half of her starting lay I put her on a trial run. She and my barred rock hen give me 2 eggs a day. I let them build up for a little over a week and I now have 11 (maybe 12 or 13 this morning) eggs Ive marked with a marker to see if she starts to sit on them. She hasnt. Its like sometimes she does...sometimes she doesnt. She is deff not out of the coop as much as she use to be and deff not out as much as my rooster and BR.
    Is she 'learning' to sit on them?
    Are these eggs a waist and I should just throw them out?
    What are the "rules" in creating a broody bird?
     
  2. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    Virginia
    Going broody is hormonal and can't be induced by leaving eggs out. Once she goes broody, she'll sit on nothing. My silkies usually go broody within a few months of starting to lay, so she'll go at some point.
     
  3. SarahFair

    SarahFair Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2008
    Monroe, Ga
    So are these eggs bad now??
    and how do I know if she is a future brooder?
    are there any signs or is it just a sit watch and wait?
     
  4. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    Virginia
    Cochins are good broodies, from what I've read, I don't actually own one. I maintain a flock of Silkies whose sole purpose is to brood for me, that's the whole reason I bought them. I have 10 hens and out of that number I have at least 1 broody at any given time all year. I don't give them hatching eggs until they go broody.

    There aren't really any warning signs, other than laying eggs. Typically they lay whatever they consider a "clutch" of eggs, then they sit on them. This instinct is not well developed, so they may lay 10 or 50 eggs before they sit, you just don't know. Wherever she lays her egg now is the place she will go broody later.

    The main sign of broodiness is not leaving the nest. If I go down with treats at feeding time and a hen stays on the nest rather than run to see what I have - that's my first sign. I'll usually sneak down at night and see if she's still on the nest at night - that's the other sign. Even if you see her out of the nest, check if the eggs are warm, if they are, then she hasn't been out of the nest long. I still give them a few days to make sure they're serious before letting them sit on good eggs.

    I would toss the eggs you have. You could put a bunch of fake eggs or golf balls in the nest to simulate a nest, if you really want to try it. A lot of old timers swear by a full nest, but I would rather put very fresh eggs under my girls, you'll get a better hatch.
     
  5. SarahFair

    SarahFair Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2008
    Monroe, Ga
    So how would I go about storing 'good eggs'?
    seeing as I only have 2 hens (as of now, waiting to get my BJG hens..) I dont come by alot of eggs..
     
  6. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    Virginia
    I usually buy hatching eggs from someone on here when I'm ready with a broody. If you're saving your own, I set mine on my kitchen counter in an egg carton pointy side down. Do not wash the eggs. Write the date on the rounded end in pencil. When I give them to the broody, I usually do it after dark and switch out her dummy eggs for the real deal - then the following day counts as Day 1.

    Eggs for hatching should be less than a week old, so when the date you wrote on it gets older than a week, put it in the fridge for an eating egg. (Eating eggs can sit out at room temp for up to 2 weeks and still be safe for consumption.)

    There may be ideal temp and humidity for storing eggs prior to hatching. I think it's between 50 and 70 degrees and 30% humidity, but I may be wrong. We usually keep our house between 60-70 deg and our area has 30-40% hum, so that's why I just put them on the kitchen counter.
     

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