Mama hen question about hatching time.

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by ruth, Jan 29, 2008.

  1. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

    Jul 8, 2007
    Woodville, MS
    I have my first eggs in bator - day 4. I have a question. When the mother hen sits on a clutch of eggs I know she only gets up for food/water/poo and in final couple of days rarely gets up at all. My question - what does she do when the first one pips and/or hatches? Does she still sit on nest? What about when many start piping? Does she "help" the chicks out of shell if it takes hours and in the meantime are the remaining eggs left un-sat on?

    Reason I'm asking is just to understand more about how it is done in nature versus how we do it with bators. Haven't come across any information on what happens in the nest and with the mother when lots of little babies start pipping, zipping and hatching.
  2. LinckHillPoultry

    LinckHillPoultry Songster

    Jan 17, 2008
    The hen will stay on the eggs. She sits on the chicks when they're all hatched to keep them warm too.
  3. @migocontodos

    @migocontodos In the Brooder

    Jan 11, 2007
    Commonwealth Of Virginia
    It really depends on the hen. Some will/do leave the nest even with the chicks hatching and some will NOT.
    No, she does not help the chicks out of the shell. If they can't hatch, they do not survive. Truely a case of on the strong survive.
    Some hens will sit on chicks and eggs for as long as eggs are there. Some will leave the nest with chicks pipping and still hatching.
    I assume at some point, nature tells her (most of the time) that she has to leave the nest with the chicks hatched because they need food and water. I like to catch all the chicks and move her to the brooder box off the nest. It's a lot easier. One those little fluff balls hit the ground they can move pretty fast if they want to be!

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