Hen staying in the nesting box

Rachie2591

Hatching
Jun 20, 2020
5
7
8
Hi guys hope you're well

My chicken started laying over 2 weeks ago, she's now constantly staying in the nest box all the time, just coming out for food and drink. I'm guessing she's broody, is there anything I should do or should I just let it run its course

Thankyou
 

ChickenCanoe

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Nov 23, 2010
32,119
25,429
997
St. Louis, MO
The answer depends on a few things.
Do you have a rooster? Is she sitting on fertile eggs? Do you want her to hatch eggs/chicks in November.
If the answer is no, then it is important that you break her broody cycle.
The tried and true method is to put the bird in broody jail. That is an elevated wire bottom cage with a little food and water (no bedding). The idea is to cool the bird's underside and that breaks the hormone cycle.
Caught early, she'll be over it in a couple days.
Letting it run its course causes lots of issues. For one, you won't get any more eggs for the duration of broodiness and for close to a month or so thereafter.
It is also possible that she will never stop. The health will suffer in the long run because of lack of nutrition and exercise.
What breed of chicken is it?

Another possibility is to give her fertile eggs since she wants to raise a family.
That isn't advisable if you're located in the northern hemisphere and at a higher latitude going into winter.
Also, I don't like first time pullets to set on eggs because they don't always stick it out for the duration.
 
Last edited:

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
Nov 27, 2012
87,633
105,514
1,727
SW Michigan
My Coop
I just went thru this, 26wo pullet laid for a couple weeks then went broody. She broke in 48 hours but has yet to lay again.

My experience goes about like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest (or as soon as I know they are broody), I put her in a wire dog crate (24"L x 18"W x 21"H) with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop or run with feed and water.

I used to let them out a couple times a day, but now just once a day in the evening(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two. Or take her out of crate daily very near roosting time(30-60 mins) if she goes to roost great, if she goes to nest put her back in crate.

Tho not necessary a chunk of 2x4 for a 'roost' was added to crate floor after pic was taken.
1603889502241.png
 

Rachie2591

Hatching
Jun 20, 2020
5
7
8
I just went thru this, 26wo pullet laid for a couple weeks then went broody. She broke in 48 hours but has yet to lay again.

My experience goes about like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest (or as soon as I know they are broody), I put her in a wire dog crate (24"L x 18"W x 21"H) with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a couple of 4x4's right in the coop or run with feed and water.

I used to let them out a couple times a day, but now just once a day in the evening(you don't have to) and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two. Or take her out of crate daily very near roosting time(30-60 mins) if she goes to roost great, if she goes to nest put her back in crate.

Tho not necessary a chunk of 2x4 for a 'roost' was added to crate floor after pic was taken.
View attachment 2390224
Thankyou I will try this 😊😊 xx
 

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