Going broody? Or just trying to lay?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MyTDogs, May 28, 2012.

  1. MyTDogs

    MyTDogs Songster

    Hi All,

    I have an orpington trio, about 6 months old I think. I got 2 eggs so far 2-3 weeks ago- very small which I know is normal. They are not laying in the nest box so I have assumed that they are laying them somewhere during the day while free ranging.

    Today while I was out working in the pen the older more dominant hen started making an unusual clucking noise. It riled up the rooster who came running over all fluffed up and sort of mimicking/replying to the clucks. The hen was in the pen with my old dog and was looking at the nest box. At first I thought the dog may have startled her but she kept on clucking and walking around the nest box. I took the dog out and closed the pen door to give her some privacy as I thought I might actually get to witness an egg laying. She got in the nest box (it has 5 older duck eggs I'd been leaving in there to entice them to use it) and nestled down as if to set on the eggs. I continued to work on my watering system and checked on her periodically. After maybe 15 minutes she got up & was scratching around the pen. I let her out & checked - no new brown eggs. The runners eggs are white or pale blue.

    She went into the nest one other time I saw but I never did see an egg. Any ideas what is going on? Is she okay? Just practicing being a broody? How would I know if she was in distress/egg bound? I have seen the rooster attempting to breed for several weeks now. Those 2 eggs I did get were not fertile, BTW...I guess it takes some time for them to get up to speed?

  2. JerseyGiantfolk

    JerseyGiantfolk Crowing

    Jan 12, 2012
    My chickens do that when they're working on an egg. They'll take note of a nest box and come back later, usually the roosters will get all "egg"cited and try to find them a spot where you don't want them to lay.

    If she's "growling" and has her feathers all sticking up she could be going broody.
  3. MyTDogs

    MyTDogs Songster


    Thanks for taking the time to help a newbie out! Yep, she was going to lay. By the morning I had a cute little brown egg in the nest & another today-woo hoo!

    Thanks again for the advice,

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