Moved broody hen, now won't sit on eggs, please help!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by ChooksinIowa, Aug 24, 2008.

  1. ChooksinIowa

    ChooksinIowa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi all,

    Well, I am acquiring chickens from a friend who is moving to another state. I went to his place tonight to pick up some chickens. Two of them were sitting on eggs. I carefully gathered up all their eggs and some of their bedding and moved the chickens with their eggs to my new coop. I put their eggs in the nesting boxes I made, and put the chickens on top of the eggs. They immediately went up to the roosting bars and have not paid attention to the eggs since.

    I have a few questions as a result:
    1. Will they adjust to the new coop soon enough to figure out where their eggs are and go sit on them again?
    2. Have I made them lose their broodiness by moving them?
    3. Will the eggs make it through the night without mom on top of them? [​IMG]
    4. I get a 'bator tomorrow by UPS. An Rcom20. Should I move the eggs into the 'bator if they are still not sitting on them by tomorrow or will it be too late and will they all be dead? [​IMG]
    5. Is there any possible way to make them want to sit on their eggs again?

    Thanks for any help!
    Claire
     
  2. Chic-n-farmer

    Chic-n-farmer Showers of Blessings

    Hopefully someone here who hatches eggs can tell you for sure.

    I think it's too late for the eggs to be saved, but the only experience I've had was through an extraordinary chicken named 'Cluck'. She did all the work. She free ranged and the one time I had to move her nest I got her to follow me by showing her an egg. Like I said, she was something special.

    I think your girls will probably get right back to nesting as soon as they adapt to their new surroundings. If they don't, you can use the incubator.

    Best of luck to you.
     
  3. chickenlisa

    chickenlisa Invincible Summer

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    I would not think they would be dead. Maybe later in hatching (if they are growing and alive inside) is all. The girls may go back to the eggs, but moving to a new location and coop is alot too. Just watch maybe and try to put them on in the morning if they haven't done it themselves. What about putting them in a secluded place alone with the eggs? I'm not too experienced with broody hens myself yet. Good Luck!
    Lisa
     
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    1. They probably are stressed from the move, no longer feel "safe" and won't set for you.
    2. Probably lost their broodyness
    3. If you could rig a temp bator and get temps up to 100F, that would be ideal. If they are not too far along, you can still get hatches if left out on the counter inside overnight. This will reduce viability though.
    4. They may still make it if they are early enough in the process of incubation. Ideally, rig a temp bator up with a heat lamp if necessary.
    5. Unlikly, other than taking them "home".

    best of luck!
     
  5. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Loxahatchee, Florida
    I agree, those hens seem stressed about the move and may just need time to adjust to their new surroundings. Do you have other chickens in your coop or just the ones you got from your friend? If there are other birds, then they'll all need time to reshuffle their pecking order.

    Hopefully those brooding hens will go broody again for you. They'll probably do a better job of sticking with their clutch once they're familiar with your coop. I've found some hens are more tolerant of being moved than others. I try to move them right in their nest boxes (flat-sided feed buckets) after dark, and make their new location in a sheltered spot without much of a view.

    Do you know how long those eggs have been incubating under the hens? If the hens won't set on them, at least keep them warm & moist, under a heat lamp with a damp rag around them. Then you can try putting them in your new incubator. You can then candle them, and again in a few days, to see if there is progress.

    I wish you the best with your new feathered friends!
     
  6. ChooksinIowa

    ChooksinIowa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hmmmm...I could get the eggs out of the coop now. I could bring them in the house and put them in a styrofoam box that I have (from igourmet.com cheese deliveries). I don't have a heat lamp (that's coming tomorrow with the 'bator). I could put a light bulb inside the styrofoam box with the eggs. Would that be better than leaving them out all night in the coop? Temps here due to be 65 overnight.

    Claire
     
  7. ChooksinIowa

    ChooksinIowa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    BTW, I know the eggs (or some of them) are viable because one broke in the process and there was a chick in it that was very recognizable as a chick. [​IMG]
     
  8. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Certainly they'll have a better chance of survival indoors even under a desk lamp rather than outside in 65 degrees. But you know that there's a chance that even though they've begun to develop, the move & the time left to chill could have done them in.

    But there's always a chance they could still survive, and you'll feel better having given them the best chance you could. I just had 2 chicks hatch out of eggs that were left to grow cold, but they were almost finished, at day 19, when that happened.

    Good luck chickies!
     
  9. ChooksinIowa

    ChooksinIowa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, I moved them inside. They are in a styrofoam box. I put a desk lamp shining on them. It is a goose-neck type lamp so it hooks over the side. I put a damp towel on the bottom and then put several layers of paper towel, and then put the eggs on top of the paper towel.

    I candled each egg as I put it in. Most of the blue ones I can't see a darn thing. The eggs are just dark all the way through except for a small air cell at one end. The brown ones vary. Some have a sort of shadowy shape inside. I don't see much veining. Maybe they are not viable to begin with?

    ARGH....
     
  10. megshenhut

    megshenhut Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd go ahead and put them in the bator as soon as you get it set up and everything in order, temp, humidity. You may not end up with anything and then again you might. How big was the chick in the broken egg? Feathered or not?
     

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