How to break a broody

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by GlitterKitty, Aug 5, 2010.

  1. GlitterKitty

    GlitterKitty Songster

    Nov 21, 2009
    I have four bantam hens that always go broody. I got them all to stop except this little spazzy determined one named Rainy. I lock her out fo an hour each day and right when I open the door she runs back in on the nest that has nothing in it! [​IMG] I can't think of any other ways to break her... I thought about puting her in with the 12 week old chicks because there isn't any nest boxes in there but she's so spazzy and even though she's smaller than them I don't trust her in with them..

    Can anyone think of any other ways? I really don't like having broodies. Oh I let her hatch chicks but then one of the hens (It could have been her) pecked a chick to death so I took the chicks away and am raising them in a brooder...

    Thanks [​IMG]

  2. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    Hello! What I do is put the broody in a cage with absolutely no bedding what-so-ever. Food and water only. After about three days, this usually breaks them. If you let them out, and they go back to being broody, just put them back in the cage for a couple more days. Works like a charm!
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    OH, I love your avatar.....Peace, Love and Cupcakes! What could be better than that! LOL
  4. GlitterKitty

    GlitterKitty Songster

    Nov 21, 2009
    Haha thanks! I loveee cupcakes! [​IMG] lol

    And I will definatley try that! Maybe I could go set up the old dog crate... [​IMG]

    Thanks so much!
  5. shelleyb1969

    shelleyb1969 Star Bright Farm

    I didn't have a small enough cage to fit in my chicken tractor (with the birds in it), so I used one of those large plastic kennel cabs. It took a couple of days longer than a cage, but it broke my broody Cochin hen just the same. Solitary confinement will altar their hormones very quickly. [​IMG]
  6. GlitterKitty

    GlitterKitty Songster

    Nov 21, 2009

    I'll have to let you guys know how it goes [​IMG] Rainy is so stubborn! She hates me now because I'm always taking "her" eggs away [​IMG]
  7. GlitterKitty

    GlitterKitty Songster

    Nov 21, 2009
    Okay I just went out there. The dog kennel is too stinky since we had to house messy kittens in it for awhile [​IMG] So I just decided I'd stick her in the chicks coop. She's fine with them in there right now. But the chicks are now The Spazzes. lol. If Rainy even come's by them they jump and start screeching and running around. I'm like really guys? She's tiny what can she do to you? LOL she keeps coming by them like she wants to make friends and they go runnin! lol oh well though, she wont be in there for long hopefully.

  8. Cleebee

    Cleebee In the Brooder

    Jan 30, 2009
    Aurora, CO
    I'm trying to figure out what to do with ours, too. She's an Austrolorpe, not a Bantam. I can't fit a cage into the coop and I don't know where else to put her. She's been broody for months, and we finally got her some eggs. Five of them got broken and eaten by the hens, and then one finally hatched and on day two got killed by another hen. I would be into hatching more again except I just don't know where to move them. I don't feel good about bringing a full sized hen into the house. I could bring the chicks in, though I don't have my dog crate anymore, just a cat carrier. And then I risk them getting pecked when we introduce them in six weeks.

    Any ideas??? I was hoping that the egg hatching would break her but it didn't. I'm worried about her. Her comb is pink.
  9. will hunt for food

    will hunt for food Songster

    Feb 17, 2009
    I have had good luck isolating a broody hen in a cage. You say you do not have room in the coop. Do you have a run? How about a garage area or shed/shelter? You do not need a big cage. The one I use is 30"x30" that I bought at Tractor Supply (rabbit cage). You do not need anything that large. Just make sure it is big enough for a water source and food source. The cage bottom has smaller openings than the cage top. Because I wanted the poopage [​IMG] to drop through, I made sure the larger openings were on the bottom. This makes for a more "uncomfortable" (read non-nesty) floor for the hen to stand or sit on.

    Make sure there is nothing under the cage that the hen can sit on. I prop mine up along the edges with 4x4 scraps. You want air space under the cage, so you do not want to place it on the ground. If the cage is sturdy enough, you can hang the cage someplace.

    I have broken hens in as little as 2 days. Most will require at least 3 days. One hen who got broody again after she was broke and laid eggs for a few weeks required a 7 day lock-up.

    I love my birds, BUT I love the eggs so a broody hen is a no-go in my coop.

    If you do not own Story's Guide to Raising Chickens, you must get a copy at your library or just buy it and keep it as a permanent reference book. It will answer 99.9% of questions dealing with the birds.

    Hey, good luck and be persistent. That is the key to breaking a broody hen. [​IMG]
  10. Trishkabob

    Trishkabob Songster

    Oct 30, 2010
    Schuylerville, NY
    We have a JG (Eloise) that went broody about 4 days ago and I think we have been after her since the first day (Storey's Guide makes the point that every day makes a difference and that after 4 it gets a LOT harder). We only have 3 chickens and she has always been a really good layer but, more important to us, she seems kind of miserable and the top hen seems to be pecking her more often and harder. Do they go low in the pecking order when broody? We have shooed her out of the nestbox so frequently that she is now going to the roost and "brooding" up there. I presume that is just as bad? I have had to PULL her down from there and she goes out of the coop and under a tree but doesn't go in search of the other 2 like she usually would.
    I could put her in a cage....I guess. She has crooked toes and I wonder if a wire cage will hurt her feet or be a problem in a way a "regular" hen's foot wouldn't?Hate to do it, seems cruel but I guess it makes her healthier and happier in the long run? Note all my question marks....would appreciate additional input and if caging her is the only option we can do that and keep her in my studio. thanks.

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