Question about broody hen and eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickoletta82, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. chickoletta82

    chickoletta82 Just Hatched

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    Dec 20, 2016
    Hello all,

    I am a newbie to hatching eggs. I wanted to ask some questions regarding the broody hen and eggs that i have put under her. She has been sitting on 3 LF eggs for 5 days now,i added 3 more two days after,and 3 more today. I candled 6 eggs today, 3 seem to have large dark things,no veins but maybe the air sack? 3 look like duds, but since they are newer eggs maybe they aren't developed enough yet. Back to my question, since the eggs have been put under her days apart,they need more days to hatch. She's sitting high up in a nest box, what should i do when the first chick/chicks hatch? Should i leave her and the babies in the nest box? Or should i move her into a kennel with the remaining eggs? I am scared she'll abandon the eggs,to either care for the hatched chicks or freak out because she isn't in her favorite nest box.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2017
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    You should always set eggs the same day or one day after. A hen will generally leave the nest 2 days after the first egg hatches.

    Since she's in a nestbox you are going to have more troubles because chicks will hop out of the boxes before the mother leaves and will die because they can't return.

    Two ways I would handle it is to pull chicks as they hatch and attempt to give them back after all have hatched.

    Second ones is some hens will allow you to move her, her chicks and unhatched eggs to a pen and they will continue to sit as long as half the eggs have hatched. Some hens won't allow it.

    You will have to wait until they start to hatch than play it by ear.

    I personally would remove the last eggs added because they haven't developed much, or I would pull the chicks as they hatch. Things can go simple or very complicated letting a hen hatch, depending on how she's set up and whether you are around at hatch time, and what kind of mother she is. Always be ready to brood the chicks yourself.
     
  3. chickoletta82

    chickoletta82 Just Hatched

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    Dec 20, 2016
    Thank you for your fast reply. She's a good broody hen. She is very loving and careful with the eggs and an avid sitter. Hehe :)
    She is not aggressive, not hissing or puffing up. I am currently a homemaker, so i am always around, and mostly outside near the coop. I believe it's best to get them in a brooder as they hatch. They might fall out the nest box and get injured. Thank you so much for your advice. I am quite excited and can't wait!
     
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I like hatching too under my broodies but it makes me nervous too because I have made mistakes and lost chicks because of it, so I tend to hover at hatch time. A good mom a makes things so much easier.
     
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I use my wire circle to move mom chicks and any eggs to the floor of the coop for about a week before i start letting them out to mingle with the flock.
     
  6. chickoletta82

    chickoletta82 Just Hatched

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    Dec 20, 2016
    She's my super sizzle! Lol
    Very sweet and very caring. She hops down to eat, drink, poop,and goes back up to sit on the eggs. We have Temps in the 75-83's now.so if/when they hatch, shall i put a brooder in a spare room with light bulb or in the coop or outside during day in the run and in the house at night?
     
  7. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    What I have done with good mommies is I try the move the whole batch to the floor first to see if she will still sit. I put the food and water within her reach. If she doesn't sit I pull the hatched chicks which will cause her to go back to original nest and she will continue to sit. Put them where she can't hear them.

    The next day more will hatch, than I might start stuffing chicks back under her on day 3 to see if she takes them back. She should recognize their peeps because she talks to them, and them back during the last few days before hatch and bonding actually starts while chicks are still in the egg.

    Good moms should just take the kids back, but keep an eye on her and make sure everyone gets back under her in the evening.

    I basically try everything until I find something that works. If nothing works I'm raising chicks, but at least none have died.
     

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