My hen is sitting on 30 eggs

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Rhondashens, May 23, 2016.

  1. Rhondashens

    Rhondashens Hatching

    May 23, 2016
    Hey, I'm new to allowing my hen to sit and hopefully hatch some chicks. I know she'll instinctively know what to do but I'm a bit concerned because I have other hens still going back there and laying their eggs. I've tried everything to keep them out to no avail so she's sitting on about 30 of them. I've taken many out and candled for viability, and most of these are. I've taken out the nonviable ones, of course. My question is how many should I leave there for her? She's actually able to cover them all. However, some of them are overlapping. I would like to make sure she's able to turn them, etc. I've even thought about removing all the eggs and putting them in a container for her but am assuming that would stress her out so feel like the best thing to do would be to leave them where they are. When the chicks do hatch can I assume she'll keep them all warm or should I remove them from her and put them in a container under a heat lamp. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  2. TheKindaFarmGal

    TheKindaFarmGal Free Ranging

    May 4, 2016
    Somewhere in the Universe
    [​IMG] What day is this? I would take out 10-15 because 30 is really too many for one hen even if they sort of fit. Take out any rotten ones, the fresh looking ones and the smallest until you are down to about 15, more or less. Mark the eggs you leave in the nest on the ends with a pen or pencil and remove fresh eggs without the mark daily. When the chicks hatch, leave them with the hen unless she is a bad mom. Hope this helps! [​IMG]
  3. jas humbert

    jas humbert Chirping

    Jul 2, 2015
    We had that problem earlier this spring. You can try to move her to another area but some hens will give up if you move them and some are fine with a new place. . If you opt to let her stay where she is and the other chickens aren't bothering her, like KindofFarm Gal says, mark the eggs you are going to let her keep and remove the new ones every day. The only problem I can see is the possibility you already have eggs of different ages- some may hatch a week before the others. If that is the case, your broody may move off the nest a day or two after the first chicks are hatched leaving any unhatched eggs behind. If you care to hatch the rest of the eggs, they may have to go into an incubator to finish. I would say not more that a dozen or 15 at most eggs under the broody to be sure they are all adequately covered especially if she's a new mamma. If you want 30 babies, candle and sort by level of development and put the newest/least developed eggs in an incubator.

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