Hatch aborted by pullet

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Chic Chick, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. Chic Chick

    Chic Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 30, 2008
    East Central Alberta
    [​IMG] After setting for a couple days on 1 egg I slipped more under my broody silkie pullet and moved her and the nest to a private cage closest to the heat lamp. After 4 days of sitting I go into the coop to find her pacing up and down and the eggs all cold and dirty. I didn't think anything short of death would break their broodiness and I'm so dissapointed I won't have a Christmas hatch to show my grandkids. Next time one goes broody in winter she comes into the laundry room where it's warm....lol
    Has anyone else had big upsets like this? I've hatched using the incubator and had standard laying hens go broody and hatch out eggs in summer, but never had any hen broody in December before.
  2. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    I just moved my OE with 13 eggs she has been sitting on for two days and she is not happy.
    When I left the coop she was pecking on the glass I have covering the nest box opening.

    She had built a nest right next to the door where it may be drafty...and I leave that door open from the AM when they go out to roam, until they go to roost in the afternoon.
    I used a tub on it's side and covered two-thirds of the top...now the front...and put lots of straw in it. It is on the floor with straw under and all around it. She had built a nest on the floor ignoring the five nest boxes. I made a surround...it is inside the pretty big coop...with wire fencing, and covered the top so the others who roost up above won't poop on it or get in there.

    When everyone else came in to roost I made a depression inside the tub in the straw and carefully moved the eggs keeping them more or less in the same position they were. Then I put her in there. She wanted nothing to do with it. So I made her stay in it...you know, kneeling in straw and poop and holding my hands over the opening. Fortunately she doesn't peck too hard. That lasted about ten minutes.

    Then I closed up the fence part and left her in there where she tried to get through the fencing...then she ate and drank...and started again to try to get out. So I put her in the tub and covered the hole with an old storm window pane. I closed up the coop after watching and listening to her peck on the glass for ten minutes.

    I'm going to wait until after dark and take a flashlight out there and see whats going on. If she doesn't sit on them, I have no idea what to do next...there probably isn't anything. She seems to have a one track mind and just wants to go back to the corner.
  3. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, I don't know how that is going to work out. I went back out and she had broken out of the tub, and the enclosure and was up in the top of the coop roosting with everyone else. The eggs were not warm, but not ice cold. I don't know if they died. We'll see.

    Plan B: I got a rake and chased her down, and locked her in a wire dog crate she can't get out of, and put the eggs in with her. She immediately got on them, poked around under herself, and settled down on them again.
  4. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    She stayed on them the night but when I opened up the coop this morning..she was squaking to get out with everyone else being let out of the coop. I let her out, and she stayed off the eggs long enough to make them go very cold...it was below freezing this AM. Water froze outside, but not the inside water. They must be dead now.
  5. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 15, 2008
    Your hen is not broody and she will not stay on the nest. Those eggs will die if they aren't already and all you will do is stress your hen. You can't force a chicken to set on eggs. They go broody on their own when they feel like it. If they are trying to roost at night they are not broody. If she was broody you broke her of it when you moved her and forced her to stay there.

    This is one reason some people use incubators instead of broody hens. They aren't always reliable. Unless you've got a hen that has sat well before and you are certain she's broody you shouldn't trust her with any eggs you really want to hatch. Also eggs survive a surprisingly long time and cool temps. If you find a broody off the nest and you have an incubator you can almost always save the eggs. Mine sat for probably 24hours over night in spring so around 50F and every egg hatched.
  6. PandoraTaylor

    PandoraTaylor RT Poultry n Things

    Jun 29, 2009
    I would try to incubate them.
  7. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    Actually this hen went broody before and hatched five of seven this summer. A roo and four henlets 18 weeks old yesterday. Either is was a coincidence she went broody or it was because I left the eggs to collect in the nest, and when she had seven she decided to sit on them. I had just gotten that pair of OE and they were in a separate pen.

    I don't eat the eggs, or I didn't then...I just feed them to my dogs. So when she made a nest recently and laid two eggs in it I decided to see if the same thing would happen. I'm pretty sure they were all her eggs as I don't think my only other hen is laying yet...she was 25 weeks old yesterday. They are all in one coop now, and of course it is a lot colder now...12 degrees today.

    On this nest she sat on them for two days...then I moved her. It was the moving her that disturbed her broodieness...and she was moved twice. She also sat on them overnight and they were warm when I let her out of the second cage. She just didn't go back on them. They didn't get cool, they got COLD. I'm sure they died.

    This was an experiment and I didn't care about hatching the eggs...if they weren't hatched, they would have just been fed to the dogs. I don't want to start incubating. I have plans for next year to breed, but the hens are going to have to do it.

    I've partially completed what I call segregation pens...six of them...and next spring I'll move like kind chickens and roosters into them with outside small cooplets/large (and dry) nesting boxes. I've had two batches hatch successfully that way. I'll collect the eggs for a couple weeks (as the roosters and hens would have been mixed together up to that point) then see if any will go broody for me. Those will be purebred chickens...or as purebred as chickens can be.

    And...how can you tell if a hen is stressed? No, really. She eats, she poops, she maintains her place in the flock, and she acts perfectly normal. I house five roosters together with six hens and they don't even fight.
  8. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 15, 2008
    Confining a chicken alone to a pen it doesn't like = stress. Chasing a chicken with a rake= stress. Doing those things will stop a broody hen from being broody and doing it too often will even stop a laying hen from laying. You won't get any chicks or even eggs that way.
  9. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    I had two Orp hens that went broody for two and half months before the chicks arrived from hatchery to them. Excellent mommas! Then one decided to become broody again but uncertain if she would hatch out. So I waited awhile about a month to see if she remained broody. This time she didn't want to be broody. Good thing I've waited or I would have disasterous results of ophaned chicks that I did not want to brood in October inside the house for at least two months.

    I would not force her to brood if she did not want to sit for that long. Right now, she is undecided.
  10. MiniBeesKnees

    MiniBeesKnees Chillin' With My Peeps

    fortunately money buys both chicks and eggs, just like it bought the chickens.
    They'll get over it.

    They got over the three Pugs and the Chihuahua chasing them so that the dogs could greet them and welcome them to the family with a friendly doggie sniff to the stern end of the chicken...Fat 12 year old pugs can run only half as fast as a chicken can...or a third as fast. Now they all hang out together.

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