Isolating herself and doesn't eat

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Indy2807, Feb 17, 2016.

  1. Indy2807

    Indy2807 New Egg


    I live on acreage and our 4 hens are very happy and wander around all day under the protective eye of our dog. All good. Except lately one of them stays in the laying box in the coop and doesn't come out. She'll stay there all day if I don't pick her up and put her outside to be in the sun and get some food, and she doesn't eat the commercial feed in the coop either. When I put her outside she gets angry and charges around on the grass squawking. She'll stay outside for a while and then head straight back to the coop again. The other hens are fine and don't do this at all, only this one. What is wrong with her?! Is she just being overprotective of the eggs and is this normal behaviour? Thankyou!
  2. Arcnova

    Arcnova Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 22, 2015
    Probably she has gone broody. Make sure she has food and water within reach. Probably she is getting up to relieve herself at least once per day, if food and water are nearby she'll probably grab a bite and a sip while she's up. She may give up on her own after a while. If she's been on the nest more than three weeks you'll either want to try and dissuade her or get her some fertile eggs to hatch. You can always sell or re-home the chicks later.
    If you don't mind the bother with chicks, it would make her happiest to have some fertile eggs. No need to wait the three weeks if that's the way you want to go.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Yep, she sounds broody.

    If she stays on nest day and night for 3 days... need to decide if you want her to hatch some eggs for you.... or break her of her broodiness.

    Not good to just let them sit for nothing for too long.
  4. Indy2807

    Indy2807 New Egg

    OK thanks for that, I guess it's normal. I'll wait it out for a while longer, glad she's not just a psychotic hen :)

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