hatching with broody hen - how long should i wait?


10 Years
Mar 31, 2009
SouthEast Texas
Except for one time, with my broodies, their eggs have hatched or started hatching on day 19.

Also, normally, they tend to abandon any duds once most of the eggs have hatched, so i take their cue and pitch the rest.

With this one, she successfully hatched 9 out of 12 eggs, starting early on day 19 and finishing up early on day 20. Today is day 21, and none of the other three eggs have pipped, and none of them are cheaping at me when i listen closely. But the mama isn't abandoning them either.

Here's my question.

Have you experienced a few eggs hatching way later that most of them with a broody hen?

How long would you wait before pitching the last three eggs?

I don't want to pitch them if they're going to hatch, but i also don't want to leave my broody sitting on some rotten eggs when she could be outside teaching her chicks how to find food, etc.

Also, i didn't candle this hatch (probably should have), so i don't have that information.
I ended up tossing my last three eggs, and i'm glad i did. Now my broody is paying attention to her chicks, and the last three eggs were definitely duds.

eta: I listened to each egg several times for signs of life before i tossed them.
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