Missing broodie, eggs in bator, 3 days later broodie back

Nu Chix To Cash

9 Years
Apr 28, 2010
Central Iowa
My buff cochin bantam hen that has been sitting diligently came up missing on Sunday. I looked all around and could not find her anywhere, even drove the pasture perimeter w/the 4 wheeler looking for feathers figuring the the worst. Her eggs were stone cold but I decided to take them home and throw them in my incubator. I candled them and tossed the bad one and kept the other 6. I didn't have an "exact" date on when they were due but figured they were due anytime after Wednesday (knew she was sitting a few days before Memorial weekend) so I didn't put them in a turner.

Tuesday am one hatched & yesterday two more hatched.
Great right? Yes, I'm very happy (and surprised) they hatched.

Last night while out doing our nightly chores my son noticed that the buff hen had returned and was trying to get back in the coop (I moved her now empty nest box back into the coop since she was gone). I grabbed the nest box and threw in a couple of eggs that had been laid in another nest box earlier in the day and she jumped back in like she'd only been gone 5 min. to get a drink of water. Before leaving (we don't live where the chickens are) I moved her back outside of the coop (inside of the barn) so the other hens would leave her alone. I had one more egg that I thought was going to hatch so I didn't try to take them out last night. That egg appeared to be zipping this am.

Here is my question - would you try to sneak the babies & the remaining 2 eggs under her or would you just put the hatched babies under her? The one hatched pretty early Tues. so its 3 days is coming to an end. I know one of the eggs I put in was questionable so would you chance the last egg? I'm 99% sure she'll accept them - just worried about where she went on her 3 day vacation.

Also, would you try to feed/water babies before putting them under her?


Brooder Boss
10 Years
Mar 3, 2009
I say go for it and put them babies under her.. She worked this hard to hatch em might as well let her raise em.. i probably wouldnt put the other eggs in there as she may neglect the babies trying to hatch out the other eggs...

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