Hatching eggs under a broody hen

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Iflyonhorses, Jul 4, 2010.

  1. Iflyonhorses

    Iflyonhorses Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 1, 2009
    Sterling, MA
    My Buff Orpington hen was so unhappy trying to sit on everyone else's eggs and me collecting them every day (I don't have a roo). I bought some hatching eggs and tried to set her up in a small coop by herself and she freaked out. When I put her and the eggs back on the most popular nest in the main coop she became very happy and settled right down on them. It has been one week and all is well, but I'm wondering what will happen when they hatch. Should I separate her from the others and let her take care of the chicks? This hen is not high on the pecking order of my little flock of 5 but she seems very dedicated so far. Also, I've only seen her off the nest once. Is she getting enough to eat and drink?
     
  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    30,361
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    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Keep checking her nest box to make certain others aren't laying eggs in there.

    Remove the newly laid eggs. On day 18 I usually put a cup of water in one corner and some layer feed in another and then I make it so the next box is not accessible for the other hens. 24 hours after the first chick appears, I take the hen ann chicks away from every one else.

    I have two broodies, one with 7 chicks, another with 3 chicks that have their own separate little areas now away from the rest of the flock.

    here is one of them. [​IMG]
     
  3. joebryant

    joebryant Overrun With Chickens

    I had a broody hen with four chicks this spring. It took about two minutes for the rooster and the other hens to learn that they'd be better off not to even think about coming near her chicks. They're half-grown now and still crowd into a nest box with her every night even though they don't stay with her during the day anymore. Sure wish all five of them would get up on the roost; they make a mess in the nest box.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2010
  4. Iflyonhorses

    Iflyonhorses Out Of The Brooder

    78
    1
    41
    Jul 1, 2009
    Sterling, MA
    Thanks for the great advice. This is a first for me, but if it works, so much more fun than an incubator, and the hen seems very happy. Two more weeks to chicks!
     

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