Newbie! Broody hen?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by chickon, Mar 28, 2009.

  1. chickon

    chickon Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 6, 2008
    Hi all,

    I've been looking around but can't find the exact answer(s) I'm looking for, so I'm hoping someone can help me!

    This will be my first Spring with my flock. I have 4 hens each of Orps, Barred Rocks, Wyandottes, and Brahmas, all about 8 months old. (And one good Wyandotte rooster boy.) I was thrilled when I thought an Orp was getting broody this past week. I noticed her on the nest a whole lot, she would tuck eggs underneath her, etc. She would get agitated if someone else was in that nest box. BUT she would get off the nest a lot and she didn't stay on the nest at night. I read that I should make her a broody box. I got rid of the eggs I had let her 'kind of' brood on, and today i will make her a broody box. My questions:

    1. Is she broody enough, since she wasn't staying on the nest at night?? Or do I put her in her broody box and see if she settles in and becomes nice & broody there?

    2. What are the storage instructions for eggs I am saving for her to brood on? I put yesterday afternoon's and this morning's in the barn, where it is pretty cool.

    Any further advice?

    Thanks!
    Kate
     
  2. cowman910

    cowman910 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 1, 2009
    Suffolk County,NY
    you can put her in the box and give her some eggs to see if she will sit on them. if you keep her in thier for about a week then she MIGHT eventualy sit on them
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2009
  3. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    Hi Kate [​IMG] !

    When my first two pullets started going broody they would do the same thing - stay in the nest box a lot during the day, and then roost at night. After a week or so, they began staying in it at night. That was when I decided they really were broody and gave them eggs. If I were you, I'd watch a few days more. When she begins staying in the nest at night, put her in the brood box with some eggs and see what happens! You could also try it now and watch her to see if she sets. New pullets can be a little weird about it until they figure it out though.

    As for the egg storage - are you getting eggs daily? If so, just collect them on the day you put her in the brood box and put them under her - or use the eggs from the past two or three days with any fresh you get that day. If you have refrigerated them, let them sit on the counter until they come to room temp.

    Hope that helps!
    Penny
     
  4. chickon

    chickon Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 6, 2008
    Thanks Cowman and THANKS for the welcome and info Penny!

    Here's another question then. While I wait to see if she sits at night, should I leave eggs in there for her to sit on, like fail to collect them? I like to collect them frequently; how long is ok to leave them in there? With her getting off and on, I feel like they are getting warm sometimes--too warm to collect and eat but not warm enough to hatch a chicken. Maybe I should leave golf balls or fake eggs in there?

    Thanks again
    Kate
     
  5. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    Fake eggs would be great! When mine sat only during the day, I would just leave the eggs in that nest until night, and then collect them when the pullets got on the roost. The first night they stayed on the nest, I removed the eggs, marked them with a permanent marker, and placed them back under the pullets. I figured if they didn't really stay broody, I would at least know which ones weren't any good any more and marking them helped to easily identify any eggs that others laid in there with them.

    I would think if your pullet is going broody, she'll figure it out in the next week or so. If you don't have fake eggs, just mark a real egg and leave it until she starts setting full time. It will be ok for a week or so.

    Isn't the thought of a broody exciting??? I didn't really need any more chickens and had not even considered letting mine hatch any out. But then a couple went broody....... and I just HAD to see if they would hatch any out! It's just too exciting! [​IMG]

    Best of luck - and please let us know how it goes!

    Penny
     

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