How to keep RIR Hen on the nest when broody

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by pdavis7484, Feb 26, 2008.

  1. pdavis7484

    pdavis7484 In the Brooder

    How do I encourage my hens to keep on the nest when they are "broody"? I have several hens that puff up & squak when I remove the eggs in the afternoon. I'd like to get a few of the hens to keep sittin on the nest. Will they eventually decide to just sit on them or do I have to put them inside a cage? They are all Rhode Island Reds. Any suggestions?
  2. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    If they're truely broody you won't have to do anything to keep them on the'll be hard to get her off.
  3. blue90292

    blue90292 Songster

    Jan 30, 2007
    Rosharon, TX
    katy's right. if they are broody, they will sit there tight and never get off until the eggs hatch. you can't make a hen go broody. i can sometimes encourage hens to go broody by leaving the eggs behind instead of picking them up. but it's not 100%. it's really up to the hen, not us.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2008
  4. 1acrefarm

    1acrefarm Songster

    Nov 3, 2007
    RIRs have been bred for egg production more than broodiness. Many won't set no matter what you do. I understand some will set but I have not been lucky enough to own one. I would look for a hen from a more broody breed to use as the setter.
  5. pdavis7484

    pdavis7484 In the Brooder

    The hen's seem to be broody at times. They will puff up and scream at me when I try to remove the eggs. Then when I hen on the eggs. What would be a good breed for egg hatching?
  6. 1acrefarm

    1acrefarm Songster

    Nov 3, 2007
    Orps are supposed to be good broody's but I think they lay brown eggs as well so you may not wantt one due to hatching mix breed eggs unless you separate her and replace her eggs with the ones you want. You could get a white egg layer such as an oeg that I think is an excellent brooder then you know which eggs you want to replace. I am not positive they would sit on the larger eggs though. Hopefully someone else can verify whether they will or not. I am no expert on broodies and such so I will give you a link to a chart. It will tell you how many and what color eggs different breeds have as well as broodiness and behaviors so you can make a well informed decision. I hope this helps.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2008
  7. pdavis7484

    pdavis7484 In the Brooder

    Thanks! I'll check that out.
  8. raindrop

    raindrop Songster

    Feb 10, 2008
    Western Oregon
    I have had many hens that fuss and peck when you take eggs from them, but never go broody. They protect the nest while they are laying, but never set on eggs. Maybe you have one of those. I've only heard of a few RIR's that were broodies, mostly they lay eggs. Try Orpingtons, silkies, cochins, OEGB to name a few that I have had luck with in the past. One OEGB mix that I had was broody about 6 months out of every year and she would hatch 10 or more whenever I would let her. I was 7, so I named her "Ten's Mom." [​IMG]
  9. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    Most hens natually cluck and carry on when you remove their eggs from a nest after they have just layed......I've raised RIRs and never had one to go Broody on me...Buff Orps, Blue Orps and Light Brahmas... I always have one of those to want to set on eggs....A Broody hen will puff her feathers and scream.... not leave the nest all day long... if you find her on the nest at night and she is still there the next morning when you open the hen house most likely she will want to set ....
  10. pdavis7484

    pdavis7484 In the Brooder

    Thanks alot. I wasn't sure about them puffin up and yellin at me. I thought that it meant she was broody. Thanks for the Broody 101 education!

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