I think my hen is broody?

lovemychooksies

In the Brooder
Apr 17, 2015
18
0
24
Ireland
Hi everyone, in the last 2/3 days one of my hens has taken to sitting in the nest box all day long. she comes out for food in the morning but the hogs the nest box all day after that. I have 5 hens, no rooster, all five are laying, and I only have 2 nesting boxes. I have another little house in the pen for them that we call the 'day room', with a cosy nest in it meant to any chook who simply cannot wait her turn in the nest box. It has been used in the last two days as my broody (if that is the case) is hogging a nest box. she also seems to have stopped laying herself so it sitting on the other girls eggs when they lay. I take them from under her but she is all fluffed up and making very grumpy sounds when I do this and tries to stop me. Is this broody behaviour? and without a rooster there is no point in letting her sit on eggs? what should i do???
 

vehve

The Token Finn
5 Years
Apr 29, 2014
10,940
773
326
Kirkkonummi, Finland
My Coop
My Coop
Nothing wrong with hatching only a few eggs either. As long as you're prepared with dealing with the possible boys. In the winter, I hatched 4 eggs, all boys. So it does happen, although statistically you should get a 50-50 spread. But if you can find homes for them or if you have a special place in your freezer reserved, I say go for it. If not, you'll want to break that broody pretty quickly. It can starve itself to death otherwise, sitting in a nest for much longer than 3-4 weeks isn't healthy. Also, the longer you wait, the harder it will be to break her.
 

Ol Grey Mare

One egg shy of a full carton. .....
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
20,622
15,032
821
Oregon
My Coop
My Coop
Thank you, I would love a few chicks for the children, but my coop only small, made for 6 to 8 hens! I have 5.

Are your birds bantam or large fowl? What are the dimensions of your setup? It may have more or less capacity than you think - which would certainly be something to consider in deciding whether or not to go ahead and hatch some chicks. Hatching is definitely something to be done with some forethought - I mean, no one would suggest just turning your female cat out to find a tom if she were in heat, right? The same thought has to go into hatching - what will you do with the chicks, what about the cockerel chicks, can you provide for additional flock members, etc. Are there limits other than that of the size of your coop that you must respect - such as a town ordinance on the number of birds you can keep? One thing to consider is that if you *do* hatch and there are females you might want to think about using them to keep your flock "fresh" and laying by possibly swapping the new girls and moving the an older hen or two out of the flock (re-home, process, whatever you prefer).
 

cindyklr

In the Brooder
5 Years
Nov 13, 2014
15
4
26
That does sound like broody behavior. I dealt with this just last week for the first time. I researched here on what to do, and followed this advice. I took the hen off the nest and put her in a dog kennel, separate from the others. I put her in the garage. I gave her food and water, no bedding. The idea is to make it a little uncomfortable and to lower her body temperature. I left her there for about 24 hours, then let her free range a little before putting her in with the chickens. She went back to the nest. So I repeated the process for another day. When I put her back in the chicken yard, she was back to normal. So this worked for me. It was easy to do, and easy on the chicken. Hope this helps.
 

lovemychooksies

In the Brooder
Apr 17, 2015
18
0
24
Ireland
Thank you that is helpful, but now I have put fertilized eggs under her I dont have the heart to take them from her! But I am thinking that it is not a good idea to have a mixture of duck and hen eggs for hatching as the ducks will hatch 2 weeks earlier than the chi'xks I believe.
So what I am thinking of doing today is moving her and her nest out of the coop and into the 'day room'. As I mentioned earlier the day room is converted dog kennel which I keep in the pen along with the coop to allow hens who just want to be left alone to have a place to go and for extra layers when the two nest boxes in the coop are occupied!
Also I am thinking of taking away a few eggs and only leaving her with maybe 2 of the same, maybe the two duck eggs, what do you guys think? I would like a duck on two pottering about the place they wouldnt be taking up coop space as they sleep seperatly to the chooks. Will the eggs i remove be ok for eating as she has been sitting on them since yesterday??
Thankyou guys it is great to have helpful people to guide me along as I am quite new to keeping chickens but thoroughly enjoying it, my dad has always had chickens but its different when you are responsible for them yourself!
 

lovemychooksies

In the Brooder
Apr 17, 2015
18
0
24
Ireland
Hi, I removed three of the eggs so now she is sitting on 3 only.all duck eggs!! of course he would know better than this and now I regret removing them, but to be honest 3 ducklings are enough for me.
I have a problem I would like advice about, when i checked her this morning one of her 3 eggs had come out of the nest, it seems the bedding and eggs had fallen out of the little box i provided for her and she was sitting on the ground on top of two of them but the third has fallen into the corner of the little house during the night and she must not have been able to retrieve it, it was pretty cold, compared to the two warm ones under her, i put it back under her immediatley but I am wondering if this egg will make it now, having been out from underneath her for so long, not sure how long, she was ok last night when I checked on her.
Can anyone offer any advice please, I understand this post not very interesting to most of you as I dont seem to be getting many replies but the reason i joined is to get help with any problems I come up against being fairly new to keeping chickens and absolutley adoring the little ladies I do have and want to do the best by them.
 

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