Please Help! My chicken won't leave her nesting box...

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Linnea1024, Feb 22, 2015.

  1. Linnea1024

    Linnea1024 Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 13, 2014
    My chicken has been sitting in her nesting box for at least 5 days. She won't come out to eat or drink. She's determined to hatch her eggs. They're not fertilized and there will be no hatching.... My other chickens are stressed because they've have no where to lay so they keep going in to check on her but she won't get up. She hasn't eaten, she's not drinking.... I've tried picking her up but she pecks me.... Do I just have to take a pecking and pull her out? I don't want her to die. I love that little loony tune... I've set-up an external nesting box in the meantime for my other two girls. They seem to have taken to it right away. [​IMG]

  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Hatchi Wan Kenobi Premium Member

    Mar 27, 2012
    My Coop
    You'll probably want to try to break her from being broody. Since the eggs won't hatch and she's really letting her own health fall to the wayside it's the best thing for her. Some broodies who aren't too determined you can break just by going in and throwing them off the nest several times a day. Sometimes you can also break them just by taking them out of the nest and blocking it off so they can't get back in. Some really determined ones you need to use a 'broody breaker' on - you put them in a wire bottom cage with no bedding. The air flowing under them breaks them from being broody, but it can take a while for really determined ones and she might need to be in the cage for a week or more. If she's pecking you when you try to pick her up you should wear a pair of gloves and long sleeves when you go to move her and then she won't be able to peck your bare skin, at least.
  3. Linnea1024

    Linnea1024 Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 13, 2014
    THANk YOU!!! I will definitely try your techniques! [​IMG]
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    My experience went like this: After her setting for 3 days and nights in the nest, I put her in a wire dog crate with smaller wire on the bottom but no bedding, set up on a few bricks right in the coop and I would feed her some watered down crumble a couple times a day.

    I let her out a couple times a day and she would go out into the run, drop a huge turd, race around running, take a vigorous dust bath then head back to the nest... at which point I put her back in the crate. Each time her outings would lengthen a bit, eating, drinking and scratching more and on the 3rd afternoon she stayed out of the nest and went to roost that evening...event over, back to normal tho she didn't lay for another week or two.
  5. song of joy

    song of joy Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 22, 2012
    Central Pennsylvania
    Put her in a cage or crate that she can stand up in. A wire cage with a roost bar is ideal. Include food and water but no bedding or nesting material of any kind. The cage can be in the coop, but block visual access to her former nest. She will be really agitated for the first day or so. Keep her in the cage for at least 2 days and 1 night. If she goes back to the nest when you let her out, put her back in the broody cage. Using this method, I can usually break the broodiness in no more than 3 days, 2 nights of confinement.

    Oh, and yes, you'll probably get pecked and she'll probably raise her hackles at you. Thick gloves are helpful. Alternatively, put a double-layer of long socks on your hands and arms to pick her up. I've had some broody hens that would let me pick them up and other who pecked so hard it would have drawn blood without the gloves.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2015

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