My chicken went broody! What do I do?


In the Brooder
8 Years
Mar 21, 2011
Upperco, MD
Our chickens are 7 months old and one of them have decided to lay on her eggs! I am new to this (As we hatched ours from an incubator) what do I do!? This will be the 4th day so we are going to allow her to keep laying since they are starting to develop in the egg. But once they hatch, do we take them away, or will she raise them amongst the other chickens?
Let her raise them
Let me begin with I am new also. But, from everything I have read, chickens tend to be better at raising chicks than people are. I have a broody who is now setting on 7 eggs. I assume you have a rooster, so you know your eggs are fertile? I don't have a rooster so I went and got some fertile eggs from someone. Then I set them all under her with markings, I did star's, so that I won't confuse them if my other hen lays an egg and my broody takes it :eek:)

This link has some very good info that might be useful.
plan is to let the hen set the eggs, and then raise the babies. I am not separating the chicks from the other hen, as I only have 2 hens.

Best of luck to you on this new adventure
The BEST incubator is the hen, bar non. When they hatch let mama take care of them but keep a eye out. Mom will get real agressive defending them unless you have a real meanie in the bunch. After they hatch just keep a eye on the situation. If she has gone broody she might lay one more but for the most part she will go "Off the Lay". You are now in the fun part
If you can, I think it's better to separate the broody from the rest of the flock. Otherwise, other hens could add eggs to her nest after she's started to incubate and then they won't hatch at the same time. Sometimes another hen will bully a broody off her nest and the eggs chill before she gets back to setting. This happened to the clutch that our head hen, Billina came from. She was the only chick to hatch out of that clutch.

If you can't separate the broody, be sure to mark the eggs she's started to incubate so you can remove any other ones that get added.

I think it's also safer, if possible, to let the broody raise her chicks in a separate pen. Other hens will sometimes attack chicks, and although the broody will usually defend her chicks she can't be everywhere at all times.

Certainly let the broody raise her chicks. It's easier for you, and she does a much better job than an artificial brooder.
Any ideas on how to seperate her from the other hens and roos? We have a coop with a run built around 2 sides of it. I can't think of a good way to seperate them. I have some dog crates...(Is this crazy for me to think about) but other than that I dont know how I could do it. Also, I cant even see how many eggs shes laying on because everyday for the past 4 days she has ALWAYS been on them when I have went into the coop. I havent attempted to move her because I dont know if she will wanna kill me lol.
Many BYCers simply put the broody hen and her clutch in a dog crate in the coop. That way, she is still in her familiar area, but the others can't bother her. Get one big enough to put food and water in and she'll be good to go.
Thanks for the great info! Also, if I move her this evening to get a count on the eggs and move them to a crate, will she continue to lay on them? I'm afraid if I disturb her she may not return to them.
Good Morning,
This just happened to us this weekend...

Yesterday....a mama walked out with 8 little newborns, ready for food and water! We are just going to let her have her way and see what babies.

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