Help! Egg eating broody hens

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by threehens, Apr 13, 2009.

  1. threehens

    threehens Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 12, 2008
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    I have three hens (did you guess that already?) and two of them have been broody for about two weeks which means one egg a day for us. The two girls sit on top of each other in the nesting box all day and night. I move them off about twice a day despite being pecked and fluffed at.

    Yesterday, the really mean one was covered in yellow. I thought she got messy with the mango I gave them until I saw egg remains in the nest box. They are on layer feed with the occassional food scraps from me. I'll add ground egg shells just in case.

    So, any advice? Should I get new chickens? They are white leghorn/RIR mixes.

    I could take just the egg eater out or both of the broody ones. By the way, I don't have a rooster and don't need a broody hen but was willing to let them be led by their hormones for awhile but not if it means eating instead of sitting on the lonely egg. The broody ones now have pale combs, is that normal? THANKS!
     
  2. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    Unfortunately those birds may sit on those eggs for much longer than if they were fertile. I would send them to jail - no nesting materials. Cured mine in two days. Do you know which one is the egg eater? Also, it could be one of the broodies thinking the egg was no good.
     
  3. morelcabin

    morelcabin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Are you sure they didn't accidentaly break the egg by sitting on it (trying to covet it from the other) and then eat it because it was already broken? It just doesn't make any sense that a brody would eat the egg purposely...goes against the natue of the broodiness
     
  4. Glenda L Heywood

    Glenda L Heywood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
    Basically you are wasting your time here
    the best way to break hens of brooding is to put them in a pen that only has wire on it and no hay or any thing on the wire
    just give them water for two days and then only a couple tbsp of feed on third and fourth day
    but basically water
    they will break up in 5 days as the body will need feed and the setting idea will go away
    BUT YOUR MISTAKE IS leaving the eggs under them
    take all eggs daily from them
    with out eggs they will go back to laying after you break them up
    and the egg eater is NO good to you
    she only will teach others to eat eggs
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    You need to break the hens from being broody. It is hard on them.

    The best way to break a broody is to keep her in a small cage off the ground with a wire bottom for three or four days. The wire bottom keeps her undersides cool, which seems to help. Give her food and water and she should be fine. Do not give her anything that looks like a nest or nesting materials.

    If you don't have the wire cage, any small cage will do, but it might take a little longer. Just find a way to keep her from going back to her nest.
     
  6. threehens

    threehens Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 12, 2008
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Thanks so much for the input. We have a wire dog kennel. Can I put both broodies in there together? Will the third get lonely in the tractor alone? I guess if they can see each other they'll be ok right? Does it have to be off the ground? It seems like it would hurt their feet. I need to put a roost in right?

    I do remove the eggs as soon as I see them. I did get one today, maybe yesterday's did just break. I hope so. Thanks again!
     
  7. Glenda L Heywood

    Glenda L Heywood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
    some times they will brood up against each other
    I would put them in wire bottom cage alone
    no the other chicken will be okay
     

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