Hen eating my almost full term eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by spiritledwoman1, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. spiritledwoman1

    spiritledwoman1 New Egg

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    Aug 15, 2013
    I am at a loss, I am relatively new to raising chickens. I have a hen that has been brooding on 6 eggs. they are due to hatch in 7- 10 days. over the last couple of days I noticed one went missing, then another one a few days later. I can't figure out how anything would have gotten into the coup or the yard as it is secure top to bottom. I cleaned the coop and found some bits of shells under the nesting where the intact eggs are. And while I was cleaning it my other hen came over and was pecking the fragments. and it seemed she pecked one of the eggs a few times. She usually lays everyday and I have only been getting an egg every couple of days from her. I have not found any dead chicks but there were a few black baby feathers stuck to one of the other eggs. I have separated the hens but my question is this: Will the hen that has been eating the eggs harm the chicks when they are born or should they remain away from them?
    Thank you for your help
    Susan
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Some broodies do strange things. I had one who I caught eating her last newly hatched chick -- having already eaten the others. I have no idea if she was eating healthy chicks or cleaning up dead or sick ones. Needless to say, she didn't get to hatch any more. They will definitely eat it if a chick dies in the shell, probably just to keep the nest clean. You just have to learn your own broodies. Usually if they set until the chicks hatch, they will also be good mothers to them, at least in my limited experience.
     

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