Help Broody Hen!!!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ChickMagnet48, Mar 26, 2017.

  1. ChickMagnet48

    ChickMagnet48 Just Hatched

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    May 25, 2016
    New Haven, KY
    I have a hen that decided to go broody this morning but she is only setting on two eggs. I have eggs in my incubator right now that are 7 days in. can I take her eggs and place these under her?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    First, be very sure she is actually broody. Some hens look broody for a while but don’t really kick over to full broody mode. My test is that she has to spend two consecutive nights on the nest instead of in her favorite roosting place before I trust her with eggs. Some hens you are pretty sure are broody as soon as you see them, but I have had a few fool me. I find it best to be patient, and in this case, it won’t hurt you to take your time.

    How big is the hen and how many eggs do you have in the incubator? Can she comfortably cover all of them? If she cannot cover all of them, some can get pushed out, cool off, and die, then moved back under her. That means another egg can get pushed out and cool off. You usually don’t get good hatches if she can’t cover all off them.

    I’m assuming you know to mark the eggs so you know which ones belong unless you have isolated her from the flock. You’ll need to check under her daily to make sure there are not any new eggs under her.

    That’s it for my things to think about. You can replace those two eggs with the incubator eggs any time before internal pip. It’s exactly what I’d do. Even if she can’t quite cover them all, I’d give her some and leave some in the incubator and give her any chicks that hatch as long as it wasn’t a huge number. I don’t know how warm your weather will be in two weeks in Kentucky, but it is spring. In cold weather a hen needs to be able to cover the chicks even after they’ve grown some in size, but in warm weather it’s not that important as long as she has a sheltered place to take them at night. In warmer weather I’ve had hens raise 15 and 18 chicks. Some slept on her or next to her instead of under her. These were full-sized hens that could cover a lot. But in cooler weather I’d restrict that number. A lot depends on the size of the hen and the size of the eggs. A bantam hen with full sized chicks can’t come close to covering that many.
     

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