how long will she stay broody?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by JanetLM, Feb 14, 2015.

  1. JanetLM

    JanetLM Chillin' With My Peeps

    49
    0
    62
    Apr 30, 2014
    I have a barred rock that is broody, 21 days today, she was sitting on 9 eggs and seems only one was fertile (you can see the shadow-it looks like a dark blob and looks like veins in the egg but I cant tell if the chick is still alive)...I had a lady give me a couple duck eggs and I have a couple bantam eggs Im pretty sure are fertile. I have placed them under her...so I need her to sit another 21 days, will she do this even if the one hatches?

    How can I tell if the chick is still alive in the egg? If it does hatch & I take it from her will she continue to sit?

    Thanks so much for all your help.
     
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

    18,953
    6,419
    526
    Nov 7, 2012
    CENTRAL MAINE
    It's very hard on a hen to sit long enough to hatch out her brood. She's already been sitting for 21 days, and it would be an other 28 days for duck, 21 days for the bantam. My choice would be to let her finish sitting if the one good egg hatches. she should come off the nest to care for that one baby after a day or two. If that egg does not hatch, and I could get some day old chicks, I'd try to foster them under her. If that is not an option, then, I'd try to break her. Let her get her good health back, and maybe she'll try again later.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. JanetLM

    JanetLM Chillin' With My Peeps

    49
    0
    62
    Apr 30, 2014
    So she will not quit sitting on her own?

    I do not necessarily want chicks was just letting her sit cause from what I have read the way to break her is put her in a wire kennel up off the ground without bedding and its too cold for that. In the beginning I was removing her from the nest box, taking the eggs and blocking the box so she couldn't get back in but it didnt help. She would just make a bunch of noise and as soon as she could get back in go back to the same spot eggs or not.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    33,851
    7,008
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    She might not quit on her own....sitting too long can be very detrimental to their health.
    Is she leaving the nest everyday to eat drink and poop?

    How cold do you think is too cold?
    She'll probably be fine in a mesh bottomed crate for a few days.....
    .......thinking if it's too cold to break a broody, it may be too cold for her to raise chicks.
     
  5. JanetLM

    JanetLM Chillin' With My Peeps

    49
    0
    62
    Apr 30, 2014
    With the wind chill this week we are -1 to -7/8 at night and day times are highs in the mid 20s(with wind chills being less and snow maybe)...these are my first chickens and she is my favorite and I'm sure this probably not bad compared to other places. And yes I was prepared to take the chicks if she didn't seem to be doing a good job or they seemed to cold. I think I will give her til next weekend to see if the one originally egg hatches and if not I will try to break her.

    Yes she is coming off the nest to eat drink and poop. I see her off the next at least 3 times a day and actually take food to her and let her eat out of my hand at least once a day...I know that is probably incorrect to do but she was my best most friendly lap sitting hen and my favorite. I have read so many things talking about how mean the hens get and I don't want her to be like that.

    As I said these are my 1st chickens, Lucy literally being the first, and I am sure I'm doing alot wrong. I really appreciate all the help and just want to learn.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    33,851
    7,008
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Are those temps F or C?
    Windchill doesn't really count if birds are in a coop without strong drafts.

    If F temps, you could keep her in a broody breaker crate during the day in the coop and put her on the roost after dark.

    If the one egg has been under her for 21 days and you only see an outline of a chick, it probably stopped developing......
    .......at 18 days the egg is usually so full of chick you can't hardly see an outline.

    If you don't want chicks, you should break her rather than give her more eggs.
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    17,744
    2,375
    466
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    The brooding effort may require a reboot from scratch. Allow her to incubate through 23 days, if no hatches, then I suggest you break her current broody cycle. After breaking you can recondition her with good eats and she will likely be back in lay within a couple weeks. When she becomes broody again, leave her alone if your actions result in her coming off the nest. Just make so she can get to food and water when she does take her daily break. The aggressive nature attributed to hens is likely not an issue with yours because she is calm enough to be handled. Aggressive hens are also otherwise scared of you. I have lots of experience exploring that relationship.

    Having her come of the nest multiple times daily, especially when temperature is low can kill embryos so avoid that with subsequent broods. This is also not the best time of year to attempt broods anyway because low temperatures hinder hatch and chick survival unless you are well setup for keeping them warm and dry.
     
  8. JanetLM

    JanetLM Chillin' With My Peeps

    49
    0
    62
    Apr 30, 2014
    Thank you very much. I am in the process of making a "blocker" for the nest box now-my nest box is attached to the roost area and at night even after putting her on the roost she would get down and go back to the nest box.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by