Hen won't leave nesting box

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MissChickadee, Oct 12, 2013.

  1. MissChickadee

    MissChickadee New Egg

    Apr 10, 2013
    We have 4 hens, an EE, Golden Sexlink, Silkie, and Barred Rock. We let our hens out of their coop/run so they can run around our yard during the day. Just recently our Barred Rock won't leave the nesting box tho. This used to be the hens favorite part of the day, they would line up at the door of their run waiting for us to let them out to yard, and now Miss.Ethel just sits in the nesting box all hours of the day! At first we thought she might be injured or something, but she looks fine and can walk like normal. We've taken her out of the box and put her outside but she always retreats back in. Question is, is this normal? Is she being "broody" and trying to incubate eggs? We collect eggs in the morning and she is always on top of one,so maybe she doesn't realize when we've removed the eggs?
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    A broody doesn't care whether there are eggs under her or not. I've had them stay broody for weeks, sitting on hay. If she stays on the nest all night as well, she is most likely broody. Other signs are growling at you and maybe pecking at you when you get too close, and "flattening out" when you lift her out of the nest and place her on the ground. They will also pluck some of their breast feathers for incubating eggs.

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