hens acting strange

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by 03cobra, May 5, 2011.

  1. 03cobra

    03cobra New Egg

    May 5, 2011
    I have two hens that are about 10 months old. about 4 days ago they started spending most of the day in the nesting box. If I take them out they go right back in. Any ideas what is going on?
  2. Up-the-Creek

    Up-the-Creek Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 16, 2008
    West Virginia
    Maybe they are going broody,...[​IMG]

  3. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Ten months is when my hens went broody for the first time. I have one right now in "broody treatment" which consists of an open-mesh bottom cage with no bedding with a fan circulating cool air under her. It's her third time broody in the past three months. She's a Cochin. Cochins are broody fiends.

    Broodies have a hormone change that makes them crave sitting on a warm, dark nest for a month. They will cackle irritably and puff up like an angry badger when touched. If you want to break a broody, you have to deprive them of the urge by lowering their body temperature, keeping them out in the day light, and air circulating under them. I keep my broodies in a cage inside the run during the day so they can still be with the flock, and at night I bring them into the garage with the fan on their underparts.

    This will usually return a broody to normal within three days. If left alone, your broody will sit for a month, lose a lot of weight, not lay any eggs, and in the end, not produce any chicks unless she's been sitting on fertilized eggs.

    BANTAMWYANDOTTE Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 2, 2011
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    Check and see if she's on the nest at night too. If she is, she's broody.

    If you want more chickens, you can either let her hatch some fertile eggs, or get some day old chicks from the feed store and slip them under her at night.

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