I finally got a broody hen

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kezabel, Nov 15, 2009.

  1. kezabel

    kezabel Songster

    One of my little bantams has gone broody so instead of trying to break the broodiness I decided to get some fertile eggs to put under her. I'm really excited [​IMG] !!!! They are silkie eggs and I put 6 under her. Now for some questions. How long should I expect to wait for them to hatch?(I read 21 days) and should I seperate her and the eggs from my other 3 bantam hens? When they hatch (if they do) will the hen protect them from the other hens in the yard or should I seperate her and the chicks from the other hens? I'm really excited because this is the first lot of eggs I've tried to hatch under a broody. Wish me luck [​IMG]
  2. 2468Chickensrgr8

    2468Chickensrgr8 Songster

    Nov 7, 2007
    OMG ! [​IMG]

    Let the fun begin ....your life will never be the same !!!!![​IMG]

    I laugh to myself because i posted almost the same question way back when ....[​IMG]

    I know there are some topics about this on here some where...everyone has a different opinion ...
    What i have done...if your chicken is friendly and well handled you can move them to a already made up area ...but speaking from experience i moved one of my" new to the broody bussiness" hens and she totally spazzed out and destroyed everything ...but then again I have my mama hen that likes to go to the "spa" where she gets waited on for 21 and more days ....

    The first time I had one go broody I just placed a small wire dog cage over her with water and feed provided ...
    I have left a broody hen in her nest box but all the other girls have laid there eggs in there also ...so if you go this route mark your fertile eggs .....Sounds like you have three other hens I think Mama hen will protect them ..Just pull up a chair and watch for the first while ...Mama hen does all the work ....some people like to separate them(mama and chicks) to feed them medicated feed etc....
    Good Luck !!! Mark your calender !!!
  3. kezabel

    kezabel Songster

    Woohoo I'm doing a lil dance [​IMG] I marked the eggs with todays date 16/11/09 so I should see a chick or two maybe on the 7/12/09 I have all my fingers crossed and my toes lol I can't wait and my kids are excited too, we love our lil hens.

    Should I try and hand feed her(the broody one) or offer her water when she's on the nest or just let her get it herself? Its just that it pretty hot here today 29C (84F) and I don't want her to get too hot .
  4. faykokoWV

    faykokoWV Mrs Fancy Plants

    Nov 4, 2008
    Cross Lanes, WV
  5. 2468Chickensrgr8

    2468Chickensrgr8 Songster

    Nov 7, 2007
    LOL ! I have hand fed my mama chickens ...exspecially when i give the rest of the flock a treat ...and yes I have brought her a bowl of water but most people will tell you she 'll get up off her nest to feed and drink ...but even animals need a little TLC.....

    Matter a fact when I first hatched out some fertile eggs with my mama banty..Jacqueline ....named after my MIL ....I marked the calender and waited on her hand and foot and 21 days past ..nothing ...I was so bummed ...I was told to leave the the eggs for a little while longer and two days past ..... I went in and was feeding her her treats and I heard peep peep peep !!! OMG ! I went running up to the house doing the happy dance ....went to my hubby's shop on the property and was jumping around ...the two guys working for us ....and hubby came running down ...to check out the weeee little chicks ..These are "Harley" guys !!!..It was very funny ....then I ran to the house and went on BYC to see what I do next ....ha ha ha !!!
    I also phoned my daughters school and asked the secretary to phone my daughters grade 4 class then and announce "the babies have arrived !" but I had her do it just before the end of school because she would have wanted to come home !!!

    Good Luck !!!
  6. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Yup, you've gotten good advice here, just keep watching & waiting, learning & enjoying. Each hen seems to come with her own component of broody skills, some do much better than others. I hope your hen turns out to be a great brooder & an excellent Mama hen. That's when the fun really begins!

    I prefer to move my broodies to the maternity ward and let them get settled there before setting the eggs under them. I have one pen with a row of small wire cages that just fit the nesting hen, her food & water. But hens can have success brooding in their main pen, just be sure the others don't bother her too much. They'll probably want to lay their eggs in her nest too, and may push her out, may break her eggs, may cause her to get misdirected on her way back from her poop breaks. You can also try placing a barricade around her & her nest.

    Just be sure to make any changes to her nest well after dark. I wish you & your hen great success! I hope she hatches mostly pullets, but make your plans now for any & all of her cockerel children.
  7. 2468Chickensrgr8

    2468Chickensrgr8 Songster

    Nov 7, 2007
    Yes !!!! Great advice !! Make changes in the dark ....with a flash light !! .....
  8. Bookworm chick

    Bookworm chick Songster

    May 27, 2009
    Salem County, NJ
    Good advice here.
    I had a broody bantam last August. She had accumulated 8 eggs before we discovered them. The eggs were in a spot that would have been dangerous to leave them. My hubby enclosed a portion of the coop with a nest box in it. We did use hardware cloth though so that when the chicks hatched they wouldn't accidently slip through the chicken wire (bantams are tiny) and get hurt by one of the rest of the flock. When her "maternity" ward was ready, we moved both the eggs and her (in daytime) to her new nest. We had no problem, she got right on the eggs and stayed there. She hatched all 8 eggs but we had to cull one chick.
    We put the chick starter and water in her new "room". Although I didn't see her eat or drink while she was setting, I know she did. I also know she came off the nest to poop. It was a huge pile and very smelly.
    We kept them separate for the first two weeks. We fed both the mama and the chicks the chick starter (we didn't use the medicated kind). During this time the flock could see the chicks and the chicks could see them. After two weeks they were starting to get kind of big for the "coop within a coop" arrangement. So, we shut the pop door with the flock outside and let the mama and chicks out to wander around in the coop for a couple of hours for several days to kind of get the lay of the land. Then at 3 weeks we let them out with the flock (a rooster and 4 hens) full-time. The mama was very protective and let the others know what was what. It's been so educational watching the chicks grow and learn from the mama. This particular mama bantam was at the top of the pecking order too. I don't know if it would have been different if it had been one of the timid ones at the bottom of the pecking order.
    Once the mama and chicks were in with the flock, I put them all on Flock Raiser instead of the laying feed. The laying hens do have access to oyster shell free choice.
    Good luck with yours. You're gonna love it.[​IMG]
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2009
  9. DonnaBelle

    DonnaBelle Songster

    Feb 15, 2009
    McIntosh County, OK
    Thanks to bookworm chick for answering a question I will have in about 2 weeks. I will have 5 wk old RIR chicks and banty chicks. All are separated from the flock, but can see them. DH made me a coop withing the big chicken house. I hope to be able to let them all roam around together when the chicks are about 5 weeks old. Of course, I will be hovering to make sure all goes well. (What do you call a good MOM?? a helicoper mom)

    I have had unbelieveable "New Mom" luck. All that hatched have lived, and no problems so far. I fed all the babies mashed boiled egg when they were about 3-4 days old. I think that boosts up the protein.


  10. kezabel

    kezabel Songster

    I went down to the coop this morning to let the girls out and the broody Miss Fiffie came out and to eat and drink and poop but she didn't go striaght back in to the eggs, she went and had a dust bath and cleaned herself, had some more to eat before she went back in on the eggs. How long can they stay off the eggs before they cool down to much, I know I sound silly lol she was off the eggs for about 40 minutes, is that ok?
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2009

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