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molting?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by justusnak, Mar 1, 2007.

  1. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    I am new to this chicken thing...and have 11 mixed breed hens. Seems a few of them have these fuzzy feathers falling out....are they molting? Is this a good thing or bad? Will they start laying better soon? Oh my I worry about my girls...when things dont "look right" How will I know when they want to set?? Do I leave the eggs in the nest? If so...how long? Ohhh the worry! I didnt worry this much when my dog had puppies!
     
  2. TheBigWRanch

    TheBigWRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 12, 2007
    Wenatchee, Washington
    When they want to set, they will start sitting on the nest day and night. It is called going broody. Are you trying to hatch babies? If you aren't then take the eggs away everyday. Eggs will hatch in about 21 days.
     
  3. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    I would like them to hatch...just not sure how long to leave the eggs in there....I have about a dozen, I brought in the house in the last 3 days...they are sitting in a carton...on a heating pad...set on low...not sure if they are still ok, I was wanting to put them all in one nest, to see if a hen takes to them. Wanting to get an incubator...not sure how expencive they are....and I dont know a thing about them. I guess trial by error?
     
  4. shadi

    shadi Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 4, 2007
    The heating pad wont work -you need an incubator there are several ways to build one-or buy one. but without the proper heat and humidity they go bad. something to keep in mind if they are fertile and die they will blow up and contaminate the rest so i would start over with fresh fertile eggs. if you candle your eggs and see a air cell at the big end your good to go. unless you have a automatic turner do it three times a day,you can keep track by putting an x on 1 side and O on other. Also do not wash them just try to pick the cleaner looking not to big, not to small eggs and no cracks. hop this helps. I just hatched 29 outta 31 eggs at christmas. remember humidity and heat has to be perfect-you can candle them everyday if you want -but then right back in -so if you want the kids to learn too you can even take pictures -egg on candler and all other lights out and no flash. ok ask me more if you wish
     
  5. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    shadi.....I just came in from the coop. One of my green legged hens, ( not sure what she is) is acting wierd.....she is "bawling"? and taking pieces of straw, and putting it on her back....then up in the nest box. The boxes are clean, and have what I think is plenty straw. Is she trying to set?? Do they bawl like that before setting??
     
  6. beckt

    beckt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 11, 2007
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    It sounds to me like she is getting ready to lay. My little Easter Egger girl was doing this a couple weeks ago and than one day I found her blue egg in the nest box. If they have quit laying for the winter this just might be the case. Keep your eyes peeled for an egg.
     
  7. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    well Beckt...you were right....I thought she might want to set...so I put todays eggs back in the nest box.....she jumped right in, I was so excited!! I thought..maybe...just maybe..she will set them for me...well...she clucked, and squated, and layed an egg...then hopped down. [​IMG] I was so hopeing she was ready to set. Oh well....maybe some time soon, one of them will be ready.
     
  8. chicknmania

    chicknmania Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 26, 2007
    central Ohio
    A funny story about setting; last summer we had a hen go broody and we let her set as we very much wanted some chicks from our old (and favorite) roo, and we knew he'd be a Dad to a least a couple. That poor hen sat on those eggs to the point where we named her Wannabe (a mom); every week or so she'd throw out one that'd gone bad; when we tried to put it back she'd growl and throw it out again. She finally gave up on all after about five weeks. We felt really bad for her.

    In November we had another hen go broody. We ignored her, figuring none would hatch. At the beginning of December I was in the barn for something and heard something peeping; it finally dawned on me that it wasn't spring, and why would birds be peeping? I glanced over to the nest where she'd been in the corner of the barn, and saw her standing there surrounded by chicks, obviously thinking to herself "now what do I do?" We went to move her and the chicks to an elevated pen with a heat source. When we picked her up she screamed bloody murder and got the whole flock in a riot; there were chicks pouring everywhere like ping pong balls...there were fourteen of them, all colors and patterns! We finally caught and got them all moved; seven did die in subsequent weeks, (we were told to expect to lose about half of them); the rest survived and are now three months old. It's obvious that at least three have my favorite roo for a dad. Good luck!
     
  9. shadi

    shadi Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 4, 2007
    When my hen started setting I was collecting all the eggs to candle and putting fertiles back -well 1 day she wasn't letting anyone lay, eggs allover the place and getting damaged -so I took a dowel rod and pryed her of and then everything went back to normal- never thought Ide be prying my hen when I started this. wierd they take turns laying in the same corner nest they made-behind the twelve nesting boxes-lol:cool:
     
  10. dargert

    dargert New Egg

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    Jun 3, 2011
    I have a question about my 6 week old pullets I have 5 Silver laced wydanett 5 barr rock 6 buff orphington. all the silver laced backs have no feathers. i never see any pecking going on. ?
     

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