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How do I know when she is REALLY broody?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by gckiddhouse, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. gckiddhouse

    gckiddhouse Songster

    Dec 9, 2008
    Desert Hills, AZ
    We just lost 2 hens to a coyote attack and are thinking about getting a few more chickens to replace them. I don't want to do the whole brooder thing again. Too much work. Would love to buy some fertile eggs and let my semi-broody BO hen hatch them and care for them. I keep hearing that BOs are great mothers.

    How do I know when she is ready for that?

    Right now, she goes in to lay every morning, in the same place, and stays in the box for hours! When we open the hatch she screeches at us, puffing up her neck feathers! It is hilarious!!
    However, she leaves her nest in the afternoon and doesn't seem to go back.
    We usually have to steal her egg. She is very docile and does not peck at us, but the screeching!! Ha!![​IMG]

    We are in Phoenix, so the weather should be fine for a new brood.
    The only problem will be that some will be roosters. We have one and that is enough! Are they hard to re-home?

    The other option would be to buy hens. But I feel less confident about introducing new adults that may not be as friendly as ours, may not be what seller says they are, the whole quarantine thing, etc...

    Thanks for any advice![​IMG]
  2. hinkjc

    hinkjc Crowing Premium Member

    Jan 11, 2007
    You'll know she's broody when she stays in the nest box overnight and won't leave so easily when you are around. She will sneak out to eat/drink when you aren't there, but will return to the nest promptly to keep her eggs warm.

    Depending on where you got your hens they may not go broody. Hatcheries tend to breed more for production, although there are exceptions. I find that leaving some fake eggs or golf balls in the nest for a couple days is usually enough to encourage a buff orp.

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