Oh no!! Please tell me she's not giving up!


Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!
14 Years
Nov 9, 2007
SW Arkansas
My silkie Jethro is sitting on a clutch of eggs with only four days left to go. Jethro has gone broody several times before. Her very first time she gave up on day 15, but the other times she not only hatched the chicks but mothered them for several months before kicking them loose so she could go broody again.

This time I have really been in awe of how instinctively "smart" she is. She's done everything right. I was reluctant to let her brood because of our triple digit temps., but she has sailed right through. I didn't give her eggs until she'd been broody for a good two weeks.

Now for the (maybe) problem - I saw Jethro off the nest yesterday afternoon. No big deal, she's good about getting up once a day to eat, drink and poop. An hour later when she was still off the nest I scooped her up and took her back to the coop. She immediately climbed back on her eggs. Last night I saw her hovering over the eggs rather than sitting on them, but it was very hot and very humid.

Today Jethro is off the nest again. I'm worried that she's grown restless and is about to give up. It's 98* outside right now and even hotter in the coop.

Is it okay for her to be off the nest for an hour or more this close to hatch when it's this hot? The incubator is running and I could bring her eggs in, but I'd rather let her handle it.


8 Years
Mar 24, 2011
When it was so very hot out my cochin got off the nest 2 or 3 times per day...to drink..dust bathe, and sit in the fan breeze for awhile. She hatched her one egg just fine.

HorseFeatherz NV

Eggink Chickens
10 Years
May 12, 2009
Sierra Foothills of Reno, NV
I am pulling for her.

Some of my girls will get off the nest for hours......seriously. I cannot count the times I have scouped Blondie up and ranted at her as I carried her back to her clutch............but her eggs hatched.

I think.......now this is just me.......but I noticed with my broody Ruby that a few days before her eggs are due, she is off the nest a bit more. She takes a dust bathe, runs around and clucks at me, stands on her tip toes and flaps her wings wildly, scratches furiously at the ground, takes long drinks of water and just watches the other birds. I think she knows that lock down is coming and she will not be moving for a day or so. When her chicks start hatching, she is locked tight to that nest, even pooping there if she needs to.

On the other hand, I have broodies who leave the nest while their eggs are hatching - just pipping to starting to zip. Their eggs always hatch also, and I have never had a sticky/glued chick hatch under a broody - even those who are off when eggs are pipping.

Now if evening starts to fall, and she is still off the nest - then..............well personally I would stand and watch her until she either gets back on the eggs or goes to roost, and then I would pull the eggs if needed - but I know not everyone is that crazy nor able to stand and watch. But for sure put them in the bator if she goes to roost tonight.

eta: your area is so warm right now, I am sure those eggs are not missing her
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Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
Jethro knows the air is warm enough to take over for her while she gets a dust bath and some wing-stretching...

I know at least one of my broody hens - Buffy, the first to go broody AND who hatched my first GrandChick - got off the nest for a couple of hours when the temps here were so gawd-awfully high.


Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!
14 Years
Nov 9, 2007
SW Arkansas
Thanks y'all for making me feel better. My plan is to wait until Saturday at a time when Jethro is off the nest for her daily constitutional to clean the crate up a bit and then lock her down. The nest area is fine, but food and water have been spilled at the front of the crate.

Every time she goes broody she gets a little crazier (and makes me crazier). This time every single one of my chickens is terrified of her. She's been picking alot of fights and even knocking my big brahma hens down when they get in her way. I had to laugh yesterday when Jethro came out of the coop and all the other chickens disappeared as if a hawk was after them.


P.S. To chickengrandma. My other silkie's name is Ellie Mae. Like Jethro, Ellie is almost 15 months old. Hasn't gone broody once.

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