Natural Breeding

hokievol

In the Brooder
Oct 16, 2016
5
5
31
I have a flock of 15 hens and a roo. I would like to breed a few.....do I need to wait until I have a broody hen or can I just breed one of my broody-tending ones and expect she'll take over?
 

Pyxis

Hatchi Wan Kenobi
Project Manager
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Mar 27, 2012
20,096
44,025
1,182
Vermont
My Coop
I'm not quite sure what you mean by breeding one of your hens - if the rooster is in with the flock, then he's already breeding the hens.

If you don't have an incubator, you'll have to wait until one of the hens lays a clutch of eggs and then goes broody.
 

hokievol

In the Brooder
Oct 16, 2016
5
5
31
I was going to pull the roo and a few hens over to another coop to select which ones I breed. I don't have an incubator, so I'm curious if one will naturally go broody in the situation.
 

Sonya9

Crowing
6 Years
Feb 7, 2014
1,875
1,090
271
Georgia
The hens will not go broody due to their eggs being fertilized. Most layers will never go broody, and if they didn't sit on eggs they won't raise chicks. Though they can sit on dud eggs and raise chicks from any source.

You can incubate the eggs and raise the chicks yourself. Have a plan for the males that hatch out.

If the rooster is with the hens you can assume all your eggs have been fertilized (just look at the yolks of the ones you eat), if you want eggs from a specific hen you can also put some food coloring on her vent and then pull the eggs that show traces of dye for incubation. There is no need to separate them.
 

hokievol

In the Brooder
Oct 16, 2016
5
5
31
The hens will not go broody due to their eggs being fertilized. Most layers will never go broody, and if they didn't sit on eggs they won't raise chicks. Though they can sit on dud eggs and raise chicks from any source.

You can incubate the eggs and raise the chicks yourself. Have a plan for the males that hatch out.

If the rooster is with the hens you can assume all your eggs have been fertilized (just look at the yolks of the ones you eat), if you want eggs from a specific hen you can also put some food coloring on her vent and then pull the eggs that show traces of dye for incubation. There is no need to separate them.


Thanks for your answer here. So the broody hen and her eggs/chicks will not need a separate coop, she'll defend them from the rest of the flock should the need arise?
 

Sonya9

Crowing
6 Years
Feb 7, 2014
1,875
1,090
271
Georgia
Thanks for your answer here. So the broody hen and her eggs/chicks will not need a separate coop, she'll defend them from the rest of the flock should the need arise?
Pen off a small area in your henhouse for the nest and chicks, never take them out of "eye sight" from the flock. After a few days open the pen up and let the hen take the chicks into the main coop when she feels comfortable, it is best to do it when the flock free ranges.
Of course don't try this if you have a small run where birds are crammed together, she will usually attack birds that come too close to the chicks (like within 4-5 feet) so if they are all stuck in a small run there will be problems.
If you do have a small run then you would probably need to build a side run/pen where they can all see each other but not mix them until she stops mothering the babies to avoid fights.
My birds are used to chicks and they never ever attack them, they completely ignore them but they will scuffle with broody hens.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom