Question about Moving a Broody Hen and her Eggs/Chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by BaaKaaawk, Sep 13, 2019.

  1. BaaKaaawk

    BaaKaaawk Crowing

    Apr 4, 2011
    Huntersville, NC
    Hi guys, I have a broody momma that's a day away from her chicks. She of course picked the favorite box of all the chickens so I tried to move her when she first went broody and she left the clutch I moved and went back to the old box... so I moved them back and reduced the entrance since she is super small so the other birds couldn't get in.

    When the chicks come I want to give her and them some privacy (and safety) from the greater flock and separate them. Given her previous reaction I am a bit concerned if I pull her from the box and put her in a safe brood box, she may not keep sitting. Is it better to pull her out now or wait until after the chicks hatch?
  2. Perris

    Perris Crowing

    Jan 28, 2018
    Gower, Wales
    I would leave her be, now and when the chicks hatch; normal practice is that she will protect them from the rest of the flock, and swear loudly at any who dare to interrupt their privacy. I would trust her to complete the job she started.
    DobieLover and igorsMistress like this.
  3. Henry&Friends

    Henry&Friends Songster

    May 6, 2018
    I enclose part of the coop and part of the run with chicken wire, to make a run in a run. Keeps the other birds away, and lets the chicks run amuck and do whatever they'd like. But I brood my birds indoors for 6ish weeks first, so I don’t know about the broody hen.
  4. BaaKaaawk

    BaaKaaawk Crowing

    Apr 4, 2011
    Huntersville, NC
    Ok thanks for the feedback. Unfortunately I have a busy coop and it is quite high off the ground (so I don't have to bend over to service it! Got tired of that awhile ago). :)

    So... I built a new "brooding box" for her I leave out in the run. She seems to have taken to it, but I did have to lock her in for a day so she stopped trying to go back to where she was (even though the eggs were with her, but she's a chicken afterall). So looks like things are back on track and will be much more relaxed for the chicks when they hatch today/tomorrow.
    Perris likes this.
  5. The Angry Hen

    The Angry Hen Crossing the Road

    Dec 17, 2016
    My Coop
    By any chance do you have a small baby fence/collapsible kennel pen? If you don't feel comfortable moving her, you can always put something around her nesting box to keep her protected.

    Normally, I move the broody to a wooden heating box (without the heat) when the chicks hatch. It is usually successful, considering, when I first left a broody hen alone, another hen pecked the chick. Though the mother was protecting her, and the chick ended up fine, when a mother hen is shifting and positioning herself, there's always a chance of somebody sneaking up.
    The biggest worry about this is that you have to very quickly move the mother hen and her chicks over. No wasting time. Maybe two people doing so would work best- so the chicks don't fear you.
    My best, friendliest rooster was one I had to move over as a chick with the mother and another baby. He's my little buddy now!

    It's your choice. Some folks are successful leaving the broody alone... but this was my own experience. Do good!
  6. BaaKaaawk

    BaaKaaawk Crowing

    Apr 4, 2011
    Huntersville, NC
    Hi there- I already moved the hen and eggs... so I'll report back how it goes. They should hatch today or tomorrow. I'll grab a picture of my "pen in a pen"... I didn't want them to feel alienated, but I wanted the safe from the rest of the flock. I also used small wire so the chicks couldn't hurt themselves and so snakes couldn't get in since it is on the ground. I *think* it will work fine. Will know soon.
    The Angry Hen likes this.

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