Oct 27, 2020
We are in Texas and the temps have been 101-108 degrees. We have a broody hen on a handful of eggs. When the temps are this high, will a hen get off of the eggs a little longer on her "daily break" because of this extreme heat? We wondered since it's a lot hotter than the 99.5 degrees you use in an incubator. Thanks!
I agree with Sourland. In hot weather I've seen a hen come off of the nest twice a day and stay off for over n hour each time. In cooler weather I've seen a hen come off once a day for 15 minutes. I've also seen a hen sort of stand over the eggs instead of settle on them.
You may have a problem.
You need to establish what the ambient temperature is in the nest box.
A chickens core temperature is around 41C (106F) If the ambient temperature is close to this then the hen can't transfer any heat to the environment and left in a nest box with a temperature close to their core temperature is not going to do her any good.
So check the temperature at the nest site.

In hot weather I used to add extra shade over the nest boxes and if the hen was in one of the coops sitting, extra shade over the coop.
I also got them off the eggs once a day whether they had got off by themsleves at some point that day or not and made sure they drank and got some time in one of the damp, thus cool dust baths around the place.
In Texas also. My langshan hatched out eggs 4 weeks ago. I put 4 of them in the incubator because I wasn't sure she'd have a good hatch. She was sitting on the ground in front of the nest most of the time. She hatched 5 out of her 6. I hatched 3 of the 4 in the incubator. The chicks were roosting by week 3 because of the heat, I assume.
My major concern was for my hen during hatch. I was afraid she would get dehydrated. I put water in the brooder with her. It's a 6x 8 brooder so she had plenty of room. She came off the nest, drank and defecated on the 20th and the 21st day in the middle of the chicks hatching. It's very humid in this part of Texas, so I guess shrink wrap wasn't a problem.
I should mention that this is an experienced broody. She hatches 2 to 3 times every year and is around 7 years old.
Is yours a first time broody?

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