^^^is being broody so bad??^^^

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by yomama, Jan 2, 2010.

  1. yomama

    yomama Overrun With Chickens

    I know this may sound naive, but I am still new to chickens. My question is, is it so bad that a hen goes broody? I have 4 hens, no rooster. I collect eggs everyday. I have one bantam hen that became broody a few weeks ago. She will sit whether she has an egg under her or not. Do they stop laying if they become broody? They have shelter and water in there run, so I have no problems locking her out of the coop druring the day, but I'd rather not if I don't need to. If I do need to break her broodiness, how long does it usually take?

    Thanks!
     
  2. K8tieCat

    K8tieCat Chillin' With My Peeps

    585
    18
    171
    Jan 15, 2007
    Northern California
    It has been my experience that a broody hen doesn't ever get off the nest until she becomes a mom. Given that, if you have no plans for chicks, you can break her broodiness by locking her out of the nest and changing her routine. Bring her in the house for a few days, and she might forget about it. Otherwise, you might be surprised at how loooong they will go without food waiting for eggs to hatch.
     
  3. Preservation Acres

    Preservation Acres Chillin' With My Peeps

    782
    6
    141
    Dec 31, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Personally, I love when a hen goes broody. Pick up some fertilized eggs from someone near you who has roosters (you can find them on craigslist pretty easily) and stick them under her. You can sell the chicks after they hatch if you don't want to keep them. You won't have any problems selling them, especially if the price is right. I kept mine until they were fully feathered (about 5 weeks) then sold them. It was lots of fun!
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  4. yomama

    yomama Overrun With Chickens

    Is that the problem then, she won't eat while being broody? Sorry if I sound dumb, I have just never dealt with this before.
     
  5. Keri78

    Keri78 Chillin' With My Peeps

    849
    3
    141
    Oct 17, 2009
    NJ
    Another dumb question...isn't it too cold to hatch chicks? I'm in NJ and nights have been in the teens? Thanks, Keri
     
  6. Preservation Acres

    Preservation Acres Chillin' With My Peeps

    782
    6
    141
    Dec 31, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Well, I'm kinda a nut, so I brought my hen inside when she went broody. I put her in a dog kennel.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, all went well. :) I kept them inside until they were about 3 weeks old, then I put them out. If the hen is a good mother, she'll keep them warm.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    3,701
    12
    223
    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    Well, you could buy her some fertilized eggs to hatch. It is rather cold to be hatching outside in many places. The main problem with broody, especially with no rooster, is you've got no chicks, and you've got no eggs. She will not lay till after she has given up being broody. They can loose a lot of weight being broody, and if they go too long, it can be very hard on them.. If there is no hope for chicks, the best thing you can do is break her up as soon as possible.
     
  8. LilBizzy

    LilBizzy Chicken Storyteller

    May 20, 2008
    Maryland
    I had 1 broody, and after about a month, she gave up, and then 3 others went broody on me. None of them were laying eggs. They were sitting on nothing. Just last week they all gave up.
    My biggest concern was them not eating and drinking. In the mornings, I would shoo them outside ( their food and water is outside ), and every night I put them on the roosts. I never locked them out of the coop or did anything except push them outside. They do get up and eat and drink, even if they are sitting on eggs. I don't know if they really eat enough though.
    They do stop laying when they are broody, and don't start laying till well after they give up or hatch chicks. So, if you count on the eggs, broody = bad.
    As for it being too cold- the mom will keep them warm, but If you decide to give her fertile eggs to hatch, you might want to have a warm place for them to be. I wouldn't want to have baby chicks outside in the winter, I just wouldn't want to chance it. I would want to give chicks the very best chance of survival. That's my opinion, anyway.
    I know chickens have lived without special treatment, and heat lamps and insulated coops for many years and have survived just fine.
     
  9. Hozer

    Hozer Chillin' With My Peeps

    126
    1
    121
    Feb 14, 2009
    Homer, Alaska
    I have one hen Welsummer that is semi broody. I just kick her off the nest box to get the eggs if any. She fusses at me a little. I dont think she is too serious about hatching the golf balls. I figure she is keeping some eggs from freezing. I did have to add a second nest box because she was keeping everyone out of hers and some of the other hens were laying eggs willy nilly around the coop.
     
  10. yomama

    yomama Overrun With Chickens

    Thank you all for the good info. Guess I will be trying to break her of it. I've tried just pushing her out of the coop, but she instantly goes back in. I was afraid she wouldn't be getting enough food or water. I didn't realize that she might not give up till something hatched! I really don't want any babies right now, I have enough animals as it is.

    Thanks again!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by