Had a hen hatch eggs outside with snow on the ground a few years ago. She was hiding in the blackberry patch. Thought she had went to chicken heaven until I spoted some other chickens going in the patch, they all got around her to keep her warm is what it looked like. In an enclosed coop, I would say if she goes broody she will hatch some, maybe not all the eggs.
I have a hen that went broody two weeks ago, and is completely dedicated to keeping those eggs warm, even though we've been having temps in the low 30s and 20s. At present, there is 20-24" of snow on the ground!
I think it depends on the hen on whether or not they can keep a clutch warm enough during the winter. My hen has hardly moved off the nest, possibly realizing that the eggs would cool very quickly in this weather. She also only has four eggs under her, which I feel is a good number under these conditions... not too many to fit under her, but not too little that the chicks can't help keep each other warm.
It's been running in the teens to the thirties and forties here for weeks now and I have two sizzle hens with week old chicks on the ground. So your answer is they will go broody in any weather, they can hatch in any weather but it's harder for the chicks to survive if they're being reared outside in winter.
They started with six and are down to four. Small chicks have trouble with rain and very cold weather really quickly. And in this misery, I have not been out there to be as watchful as I am in Spring/Summer and Fall, so they'll lose more this season than others.
They're mixed chicks, not part of my breeding program but both are dedicated broodies who are impossible to break up once they start, so I let them try. It's a tough time of year for a serama/sizzle chick to try and survive but the four appear to be doing well at this point.
It's been -9*F here during the day and one of our Buff Orp hens has been acting a little broody today.
She went broody once last Summer and it's possible she will during the winter, too. When she goes into her nest box to lay her daily egg, she will fluff up, peck at any other chickens who get too close to her nest, and spend more time than usual to lay her egg. I actually hope she does go broody, as long as it's not too old.
how do i know if she will get broody? she has about 10 eggs right now . it is two chickens laying in the same nest . how many eggs will she lay before she starts to sit on them ? i had one that was broody earlier but a coon got her
You should be taking the eggs until she starts to act broody. You will start to notice her staying in the nest box most (if not all) of the time. She will also lay with her body kind of flattened out, but will puff up her feathers at anyone or anything that gets too close.
Sometimes, broodies will also peck or nip your hands when you try to take her eggs, but mine doesn't. She does make little cluck-cluck and growling sounds to complain, whenever I bother her, though. I wasn't sure if I would be able to tell when one went broody... but once you see it, you can tell!
Letting her keep accumulating eggs won't convince he to go broody, unfortunately. If the nest box gets too full of eggs, it may prompt the hens to start looking for a new place to lay... which you don't want. They will only go broody when the urge strikes them, so you just have to wait until they decide they're ready, and watch them for the signs I mentioned above. Good luck!
I have 6 serama hens gone broody, I thought I broke them of that a month ago, but they are determined to be mothers. I let a serama hen hatch some last mid winter, with freezing nite temps, but I kept a clamp brooder light near her nest box, so that when she came out with her chicks they huddled under the light while she scratched around to eat. I have let them hatch them and remove them from the nest and put them in a brooder to raise them when days were just too cold, and the hen and chick pens take up too much space. I have 3 doz serama eggs,and 2 1/2 doz silkie eggs, and 6 porcelain d'uccle eggs, that I need to just sell, because I have my brooders all filled and even have a few eggs still in the bator due New Years. Wrong time of the year to hatch, but if you hatch some in Jan , those chicks that become pullets can begin laying in June and July.