How do I make a broody hen?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by gaitedgrl, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. gaitedgrl

    gaitedgrl Out Of The Brooder

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    I am new to chickens. We purchased our first ready to lay pullets a couple months ago. We started with 10. We are now down to 8. One was put in the kettle as she was eating eggs and we lost one of our Buffs yesturday and I think she was snatched by something while out and about. She wasn't at the coop last night by dark which just isn't like her. We looked all around last night and this morning and couldn't find her. So my thoughts are this...instead of contacted the gentleman that we bought ours from, could I make one of our hens broody? How do I go about this?
    We don't have a rooster, but my in laws do and they got their chickens from the same place- I was thinking I could get some fertilized eggs from them (barnyard mix) but wonder how many eggs do I get? I am assuming that not all will take? Then I am wondering if I can just let my hen go to town and raise them herself? Do I have to move her or can she just stay in the coop with all the others and go to it with some small adjustments to the coop once the chicks arrive....

    Just wondering if this is all doable. I would like to raise my own replacement layers and this sounds like a good way to do it, but am hoping that the broody hen and chicks can stay in the same coop with the other girls. We don't have a roo.

    Thanks for the help!
     
  2. This_chicks_place

    This_chicks_place Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi, I am new to the chicken thing. But from what I have read, I don't think you can "make" a hen go broody. I think they have to do that on their own
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2011
  3. gaitedgrl

    gaitedgrl Out Of The Brooder

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    I believe my buff would go broody really easily- would I be able to put a bunch of golf balls in for a couple days and see what happens- see if she sits?
     
  4. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    It's a hormonal thing, you can't make them go broody.
     
  5. gaitedgrl

    gaitedgrl Out Of The Brooder

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    I am going to do a bit of research then....so it must be like seasonal or something like that...
     
  6. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    A lot has to do with breeding for lots of eggs, which means breeding away from broodiness. A hen of most any breed will occasionally go broody, but really, if you want broodies, the more likely ones are certain breeds. A paragraph near the bottom of the first page of this article should help:

    http://www.themodernhomestead.us/article/Broody-Hens-1.html

    Also, Henderson's chart gives, for each breed, the likelihood that a hen will go broody -- which of course is no guarantee either way.

    http://www.ithaca.edu/staff/jhenderson/chooks/chooks.html
     
  7. gaitedgrl

    gaitedgrl Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you- those were very informative.

    I am going to try a nest of golf balls and see what happens for a couple days. Our one buff has never gone up to the roost at night so just maybe....also maybe I won't collect the eggs as frequent as I have been.
     
  8. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    If she's not roosting a night, she's likely already broody.
     
  9. gaitedgrl

    gaitedgrl Out Of The Brooder

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    The one buff that I said doesn't roost at night, really never has since we have had her (months) she just sits in the nesting box right on the edge. All the others go up at night and she just doesn't. After we first got them, I would go out there EVERY night and put her up on the roost, but after night after night she never would.

    My feelings are what is it going to hurt to fill up a nest box with some comfy straw (the others have nest pads) and put some golf balls and see what happens? OR do I try and get a box and put it in a seperate area closer to the floor and set her on it at night and see what happens that way I wouldn't have to move her from the nest box as it is higher up?
     

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