New broody, new set up....


Free Ranging
16 Years
Feb 14, 2008
This world is not my home.
Got my first broody of the year and, as usual, it's very exciting! I moved her from a regular nest box into the broody pen and will see in the morning if that has been a successful move. She is a 2 year old White Rock hen, a good and consistent layer and a hardy bird. She has been bred by my Partridge Rock roo.

I just went in the coop after dark and covered her with a towel, carried her quickly to the broody nest and placed her on a few pre-selected eggs and draped the whole area with the towel. This method has worked for me in the past. I will let her fill out the clutch with her own eggs now and will not attempt to substitute as I have in the past.

This year, I sectioned off my broody pen with haybales and was able to make my small pen into a place for at least three broodies. They will each have a private dark cubby under strategically stacked hay bales. Each space has pine bedding and a nest of fresh hay. I can't wait to see how this works out and if the chickens will share the space. They will each have their own feeder/waterer and will only be able to see each other if they hop onto the hay bales and drop down into the other spaces. I doubt a broody will get that far from the nest. When the chicks hatch, the chicks will not be able to leave their designated space, so I don't expect the hen will either.

Last year I had two broodies in the same pen and they shared the space, could see each other and shared the same feed and water. It seemed to make them both nervous and unsettled. I didn't have a good hatch rate and one stopped setting altogether near the end of the hatch. She did, however, help the other hen raise her brood.
Not yet but it's working out great right now. Will have to see the results when I get another broody or two in it. Heck, it looks so secluded and cozy that I want to sleep there!
The broody is setting on this nest very well, no eggs rejected out of the nest and none damaged. I have kept the whole pen darkened somewhat by the use of towels stapled over the door and window screens. This is the most contented broody I've had yet and I'm hoping for a great hatch.

No other broodies in the flock yet, which is highly unusual at this time of year. I'm hoping for at least a few more.

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