Health Help for New Broody Hen


5 Years
Apr 22, 2014
Arroyo Grande, Ca
This is my first time hatching eggs and my first broody hen. When Rowena went broody, I gave her four other fertilized eggs from my other chickens to hatch along with her one that she's been sitting on.

I built her a separate enclosure attached to the coop where she and the other chickens can still be in contact.

She is an 8 month old Olive Egger hatching eggs fertilized by an 8 month old Easter Egger.

She is a very dedicated brooder. I have not seen her get up from the nest on her own and suspect she hasn't because no food or water is consumed unless I am there. I take her out twice daily and make her eat, drink, and move. About every 3 days she will bathe. And about every 3-4 days she will poop. Is this normal? This last poop waited almost 5 days.

Secondly, she is gurgly. Not when she is alone and just breathing, but she is making gurgling sounds when moving around and drinking. Is this normal? The sound is more than her growl when I first open the nest and she puffs her feathers.

I also candled the eggs and see that 4 of the 5 are developing. The last, I'm not so sure. When do I remove the egg? We are on day 12 of incubation.

Thank you for any advice. I love this girl, and her health is priority to me.
Last edited:


12 Years
Mar 15, 2010
On the MN prairie.
I never take my broodies off the nest to eat or drink. If you let her be, she'll do so on her own. They like to be secretive when they leave the nest, and really don't want to be bothered. She's not burning many calories so she really doesn't need to eat that much. Also with the pooping. If she's not eating as much, she's not going to poop as much. If you're not sure about the development of the 5th egg, I would suggest just to leave it. Either it will grow or it won't.

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