Is She Broody At 8 Months Old???

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by TwoCrows, Oct 24, 2011.

  1. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    My Coop
    I have 4 Black Australorp girls that are 8 months old. I have a small coop with only 1 nest box which is external so that there is more room in the coop. One of the girls has, for the last 2 weeks, began going into the nest box hours before she needs to lay, she eventually lays, and even when I remove the egg, (she screams and bites at me), she STILL sits in the nest box.

    The other girls get anxious to get in and lay their eggs, while "Pearl" hogs up the box for hours at a time. I have, for now, made up a movable nest box for the other girls to lay if they just can not "hold it" any longer.

    Is this hen broody? Or is she just having a hard time laying? Excuse my ignorance here, but I am new to chickens this year and I have NO idea what goes on in a nest box!! [​IMG] She always, and eventually passes an egg. The egg is somewhat "wrinkled" a bit. I don't know if that has anything to do with it. Thanks...Leyla [​IMG]
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Box monopoly is somewhat common. Whether she actually goes broody is to be determined. You need another laying box, pure and simple. She cannot occupy both of them at once. "Normally" one box is enough for up to 8 hens, but not in your case.
     
  3. HHandbasket

    HHandbasket The Chickeneer

    Sounds like broody behavior to me.

    My Olga (American gamehen/EE cross) started laying at 5-1/2 months of age, laid for 2 weeks, then went broody. She's 15 months old now and has gone broody FIVE times since the first of the year (we've let her hatch out 3 times, though). She's more reliable than our $300 incubators.

    I agree with the other comments that you should get another nesting box. Hens can be funny creatures sometimes, though. We have 9 hens that are laying, another 15 coming to POL in the next month or so and have begun practicing the eggsong and checking out the nesting boxes, and they ALL want to use the same box! We have 4 coops, and 3 of them have nesting boxes. The big coop has actually 4 nesting boxes, the A-frame has 2, and the other coop has 4. That's 10 nesting boxes in all, but they all wanna lay in the same spot and will even stack up 2-high in the same box sometimes! LOL! That's always funny to see.
     
  4. bambi

    bambi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a Barnevelder that went broody when she was about 24 wks old. So I am saying yes they can @ this age.
     
  5. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

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    My Coop
    Thank you everyone for the replies! I had noticed about 2 hours ago she had eventually come out of the box and was out with the girls feeding and such, however when I just went out to get them all tucked in bed, she was BACK IN the BOX!! And boy was she mad at me for kicking her out!! She would have no doubt slept in the box and waited till morning for her next egg!

    So I agree with you all, I am going to have to add another box on the exterior of the coop. Until I get the hubby to build me one, [​IMG] I will have to use the portable one I made for them out of some plywood. It works just fine, but it or another one needs to be mounted on the outside so it does not take up room in the coop.

    Thank you all for your answers! GREAT... I have a broody hen!!! UGH! I was hoping I would never have to deal with one. LOL She is already a cranky girl to begin with. So she will no doubt get crankier over time. Thanks all!...Leyla
     
  6. Barry Natchitoches

    Barry Natchitoches Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a buff orpington lady who began laying eggs at 19 and 1/2 weeks old. Less than a month later, she went broody.


    She delivered her first clutch of three hatchlings two days BEFORE she celebrated her 6 month birthday!


    BTW, all of my pullets were the same age as "Momma," so that means that the babies she delivered came out of eggs that were delivered by pullets who were less than 6 months old. And our only rooster was the same age as the pullets (all came to me at the same time, and they were two days old when I got them). So the daddy roo was also less than six months old when he fertilized those eggs.
     
  7. Barry Natchitoches

    Barry Natchitoches Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That little buff orpington lady delivered her clutches back in 2009-2010. She's now getting up in age (two and a half years old now), and has not gone broody since early 2010.


    But I have another group of birds -- pure breed Ameraucanas that I got from Ameraucana breeder John Blehm. They were born about April 11'th of this year.


    One of the little pullets out of that group -- a buff Ameraucana -- announced to the world last Wednesday that she is a serious broody. That was the day I found her sitting in a nest, surrounded by her stomach feathers, which she had plucked out.


    For six days now, I have not seen her come off that nest -- in fact, I go stroking her once or twice a day to make sure she is still alive! (And yes, she clucks angrily at me when I do that, but at least I know she is still OK).


    She is just a little over six months old, but she is definitely dedicated to her brood as I write this...
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2011
  8. pgpoultry

    pgpoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's not unusual with the broody types for them to go broody just after starting to lay.

    I have two Brahmas who did just that in their first year after only laying a handful of eggs each. One of them has been broody every year at least three times per year and both were good mums the first time round.

    So....do you want chicks, or are you going to try to break her?
     
  9. jengro65

    jengro65 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Similar here Barry:) My White Leghorn shockingly went broody at 6 months. Her sister flock mates were all her age and the Roo was 2 weeks younger. She stayed on 7 eggs and hatched all 7! They are 4 1/2 weeks old now and doing great.
     

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