My turn for broody questions

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by 4 luv of eggs, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. 4 luv of eggs

    4 luv of eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well it is looking like my 5 1/2 month Austalorp has gone broody. It's not definate though. She has only been laying for three weeks and has always liked to remain on the eggs for quite awhile. Of course she's on the favored nest box. She's not puffy or grumpy though. I was able to shoo her off the nest and retrieve the eggs she was sitting on. She got down and began eating quickly but she got right back on the empty nest.

    She's head honcho around the coop and likes to keep others away from coveted things. One of the younger Production Reds was waiting her turn. She'd go and check out the other two boxes and then went back to the one that Rose was in and stand there staring at her. Rose slowly turned her back so she wouldn't have to look at her.

    A few questions though. Isn't 5 1/2 months too young to go broody? Could she just be playing keepaway from the others? There are no velocaraptor sounds or unusually huge poos (not yet). How long will she stay broody? Will the others chose another nest box or start laying them everywhere because they can't get in that one? Or will they lay on top of her?

    I know, I know. It could be a combination of any one of those scenerios but I need to know what I'm facing here.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2010
  2. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I had two buff orpingtons go broody at about that same age, and they both hatched and raised chicks successfully.

    You'll know she's really and truly broody when she starts spending every night and day in the nest box. Not all broodies take on the velociraptor aura, but they often do. I had one broody who would move to the edge of the nest box and turn her tush toward the outside, to keep the others out of her box; she was protecting her eggs. My other broodies haven't been that smart, and will let others lay on top of them, beside them, or go take a break while others are using the box. Usually, my girls will eventually pick another box if they can't get into the favored one.

    She could stay broody a very long time. For her own health, if you're not going to give her eggs to hatch, i would recommend breaking her brood.

    The giant broody poos happen when they've held it for all day - and sometimes several days. So it's the most noticeable after the last three days of the hatch when she probably won't take breaks. Until then, hopefully, she will get off the nest for her daily constitutional, and you might not notice her giant poos.

    Hope that helps....and just an aside, if i were you, i would let her hatch. It's a really wonderful thing to witness.
     
  3. Dora'smom

    Dora'smom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a first broody in my second flock. She was around 22 weeks or so when she became a dedicated broody, sitting on her golf balls, no matter what anyone did. It took me awhile to get her a few fertile eggs, and she is still at it, and it is day 16 or 17, depending on how you look at it. I think it's just the individual genetics and hormone levels of that particular bird. You will just have to watch her a bit and see if it is real.
    FYI, now that we have moved her into the new coop with the others, the other birds do tend to come up into her box, and lay while she's in there, or hang out in there preventing her from coming back up to sit on her eggs. We'll see if we get chicks out of her remaining eggs.
     
  4. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    First off, not to burst your broody bubble, but she may not be broody. I've had several chickens spend 4 hours on the nest after laying, even puff up and screech at me (think pufferfish - scared the crud out of me the first time), but never went fully broody. If she starts staying on the nest at night, then you have yourself a broody.

    My first broody is hatching right now. She just puffed up and chittered at me for the first week, then she got really protective and started biting me if I tried to check on the eggs. And you'll know the broody poo when you smell it - and you WILL smell it before you see it. It's the most awful, disgusting stuff on the planet. I'm convinced it's predator protection, cuz there isn't ANYTHING that's going near that!

    And no, 5 months isn't too young. My broody is 7 months old. And yes, the other hens will lay on top of her. I chose to move mine to a secure area inside the coop. She's lower on the pecking order and a couple of my older hens will chase everyone out of the coop when they want to lay.
     
  5. Wendy'sChicksRock

    Wendy'sChicksRock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ok my broody ( been there for a week 24/7 ) is still at it. poor thing I have no eggs for her to hatch and I cant keep her out of the box. She just hunkers down in another one. Should i just leave her be? how long does this last?
     
  6. 4 luv of eggs

    4 luv of eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks everyone.

    I really don't want her broody. I have no more room and it's too late in the season to raise chicks even though I want silkies. I'll watch her. The box she's in is the only box I still have a fake egg in. That's all she's sitting on now ( a hideous, fake, orange easter egg). I may remove that and see what happens. I had one in all the boxes but they have all disappeared except that one. I wonder if that's why they prefer that next box.

    I'm hoping she's just hogging the box.
     
  7. Dora'smom

    Dora'smom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not sure how long it lasts. My broody was at it for several weeks (at least 2 1/2) while I worked out a plan to get some eggs for her. Now, actually sitting on the eggs, it's been 16 or 17 days, and I am assuming that the broody spell will be broken with hatch of babies. If something goes awry, I have a plan to buy a couple of chicks and sneak them under her at night to help insure that she comes out of broodiness. It's somewhat of an unknown.
     
  8. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    If you can't separate her, then try taking her off the nest and setting her outside as many times as you can during the day. Mine eventually give up that way-except silkies, LOL
     
  9. 4 luv of eggs

    4 luv of eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, she's not broody. When hubby came home she was off the nest and there was another egg in the favorite box. I honestly think she was purposely keeping the nestbox from the Production Red. The Elite Five seem to only share with each other. Brats!
     

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