moved my broody hen and her eggs last night...

jsbinore

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 3, 2014
1
0
7
Hi! Last night we moved our broody hen to her maternity ward and she did not lay on her clutch all night. They were in a nest in a box and I guess she didn't get that. First thing this morning I checked on her and noticed her off the eggs,and they were cold. I immediately put the clutch in the middle of her private pen and she got back on them.
My concern is the eggs getting cold. This was day 3 of incubation, is it possible that they are still viable? Thank you for any information
 

BCMaraniac

Songster
6 Years
Mar 27, 2013
1,860
413
176
Hi! Last night we moved our broody hen to her maternity ward and she did not lay on her clutch all night. They were in a nest in a box and I guess she didn't get that. First thing this morning I checked on her and noticed her off the eggs,and they were cold. I immediately put the clutch in the middle of her private pen and she got back on them.
My concern is the eggs getting cold. This was day 3 of incubation, is it possible that they are still viable? Thank you for any information
I hatched my first set of broody chicks last year, so take anything I say with a HUGE grain of salt. The only fertile eggs I had were mixed from my layer flock and Orpington rooster. I moved my broody at night like you did and like yours she was off the nest the nest morning....but she was sitting in a different location in the pen with no eggs. So I put the cold eggs under her to see if she was going to stay in her newly chosen spot, and she took the eggs. I gave her a couple of days to see if she would stay on them, and she did. So, at night, I took those eggs from under her and replaced them with new eggs because I didn't want to take a chance on the eggs not being viable. Brooding is stressful on the hens physically, so I didn't want to find out several days later that they weren't viable and have to start all over again and add to her stress.

In order to give her some privacy, I took a box and cut an opening in one end, then placed it over her so she would have privacy. She brooded the second set of eggs and hatched 11/11 eggs.

I will never know if the first set of eggs were viable, but to me the health of my broody was my main concern, and I didn't want to prolong her broodiness. As an aside, when she finished brooding her chicks, she was in great condition because she was eating chick feed, then she laid 2-3 eggs in the layer nesting box, then no more eggs. A couple of weeks later she disappeared, then showed up 3 weeks later with chicks. Copper Marans are known to go broody frequently and often too frequently.

I guess the long and short of it is whether or not these eggs are worth taking a chance on in terms of their fertility, assuming she stays on them from now on. From what I understand, during the first few days of incubation the embryo is very vulnerable.

Hopefully someone who knows way more than me will chime in to help you.
 
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