Possible broody hen problem


8 Years
Apr 15, 2011
Garden City, ID
I have a broody speckled sussex who's been sitting on eggs for about 10-12 days. Last night when I went out to candle her eggs, she started pecking at and trying to eat the eggs in the nesting box next to her. I took them away, and this morning she hasn't eaten her eggs, but is this behavior normal?
I don’t know what was going on, but are you sure she was trying to crack them and eat them? Where was she while you were candling the eggs? Still on her nest, roaming around, or trying to settle on those eggs since you were disturbing her nest?

It’s not that unusual for a hen just laying eggs, let alone a broody, to sort of peck at eggs and move them under her. A broody also turns her eggs. I don’t know how serious that hen was about opening those eggs.

It is not normal for any hen to open an egg to eat it, broody or not. It is perfectly normal for a hen to eat an egg that is already open. That’s not an egg eater, that’s just taking advantage of free protein. It’s when they open the egg to eat it that it is a problem.
It was late last night when I went out there. She didn't crack one of hers. I have been taking food to her and she gets out of the box to eat. I am going to be more diligent about checking on her though. She pecked a hole in it and started eating it. when I took it away, she started trying to peck at another one. Since it was so late, is it possible that she just really couldn't see it and was pecking at something that might have been food?
That's disturbing. I don't know why she was trying to do that. I think I'd try to collect the other eggs as often as possible and hope for the best. Maybe it had something to do with you being out there at night disturbing her.

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