our Astrolorp went broody about a month ago and I decided, what the heck, I'll get some fertile eggs off of craig's list and help my friend build her flock without the tedium of using an incubator or having to tend the chicks by hand. so I waited the recommended week to assure she was "committed to sitting" and then I met a total stranger in a safeway parking lot, exchanged cash for a dozen eggs and then, come night fall, I exchanged the fake eggs for the real ones. today was day 21 and i went down to the coop and Pearl had left her box and moved to the floor, and much to my delight, 9 little peepers had made it! She left some of them in the box, so I transferred them to the ground and they wasted no time getting under wing. my kiddos were super psyched to watch a real hen care for her chicks. It's just kind of wild that a first time hen knows just what to do, every step of the way. Our Pearl was raised by us by hand from our own DIY incubator (cooler-bator) that I put together for my daughter's kinder garden class last spring, so we've come full circle and thankfully Pearl is very trusting of my children!