Murderous hen in my coop


7 Years
Oct 16, 2012
New Hampshire
hello all its been a long time since I have logged in. I had a fox related tragedy in my coop and lost my whole flock of beautiful Black copper Marans. So I went for a long time with no birds because I was unable to get marans again. But Girlfriend moved in with me and saw that I had chicken mansion that was empty. After a large amount of harassment I caved and went ahead and let her pick out some chicks at the local feed store. long story short we ended up with two olive egger hens in the end. the egg production was good from them and she decided she wanted to expand her flock and have a roo so I went ahead and picked up a beautiful your americana rooster nice white grey and bluish grey feathering with the appropriate tuffts around the face. so a few weeks after his introduction they were all settled in and she decided she wanted to do her first hatch. so I let them build up a nest of about 12 eggs. one hen (her favorite named kitty) is broody as all get out and took to the duty of hatching all the little ones. everything has been going well. that is up until today. i went out to go check on everything and i found two wet chicks dead as can be and no shells left from them. kitty seems to have killed them both and ate the shells. so i shrugged it off thinking its her first clutch maybe she crushed them or they were sickly. i went back out tonight to check on things and found number three wet and dead with no shell left that i could find with yoke remnants still on its belly. i quickly took kitty off her nest and took the remaining eggs into the house and candled them all to make sure they were viable eggs found them all to be almost about the hatch and placed them in a make shift incubator. (here hoping they hatch)

Has anyone had a issue with a hen doing this as well? I am a pretty veteran chicken raiser/breeder and never in all my 30 years of life have I had a hen kill off all her brood. they get crushed oyster shells in their feed always have feed and water they get some veggies and fruits from local gardens and the bargain rack at the local grocery store.

to be honest my first instinct was to cull her out of the flock i have no patients for a hen that kills its or another hens brood. but i figure maybe shes just a new mom and in the spring ill let her try again but monitor her very close to make sure she wont have a chance to kill anymore chicks.

any idea you have i would appreciate the input.

as well if you have any fertile Pure black copper maran eggs feel free to send em my way! I dont mind spending a little money to get some so I can start my flock of pretty laddies again.
My personal suspicion is that we see some unxpected patterns and behaviors in broodies that are related to efforts to breed broodiness out of them, of course to increase egg production. I too had one broody who killed her chicks as they hatched, but there were a few ants around, and I wann't really sure what was going on. I never gaver her another clutch to hatch, but I had a couple of other broodies who did their job.

In your case, because thie was her first try, and especially if she was young, another go at it it might be worth the ' hens trouble. These "Easter Egger" (I'm guessng that is what she is) hens usually make good pets and mamas; both my best broodies are EE's. Up to you.

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