Random Broodiness Question...

TuesdayChickens

In the Brooder
May 18, 2020
16
23
39
Massachusetts
Hi, I don't have a problem, I am just a little confused about broodiness in hens. I know some hens will have a tendency towards broodiness, but will a broody hen be broody from the start, and remain so as long as she is laying, or could a hen that has not been previously broody randomly become so? I am asking because I would actually like to let a hen raise some chicks someday, but so far none of my hens have shown any interest in setting! I'm just wondering if there's any hope in the future of any of my gals getting a maternal notion... I'd love them just the same either way, but I would like some grandchickies! :p

My girls (and George, the roo) are almost 8 months old. My hens are 3 Black Stars, 3 Barred Rocks and 1 Silver Laced Wyandotte. I also have 1 Buff Orpington and 3 Americana pullets (about 9 weeks old).

Any info or relevant anecdotes are welcomed! :D
 

CluckerFamily

Enabler
5 Years
Feb 14, 2016
10,397
61,028
1,131
Wisconsin
One of my 7 year old hens has gone broody twice. One of those times, I let her hatch some eggs.
One of my pullets went broody this fall but I slowly broke her of this. I didn't want a pullet hatching eggs.
I have had chickens for 7 years, I have 16 hens/pullets, and these are the only broody experiences I have had.
 

TuesdayChickens

In the Brooder
May 18, 2020
16
23
39
Massachusetts
One of my 7 year old hens has gone broody twice. One of those times, I let her hatch some eggs.
One of my pullets went broody this fall but I slowly broke her of this. I didn't want a pullet hatching eggs.
I have had chickens for 7 years, I have 16 hens/pullets, and these are the only broody experiences I have had.


Hmm, interesting! But a bit discouraging! Seems like i doesn't happen frequently... I didn't know a pullet could go broody!
 

CluckerFamily

Enabler
5 Years
Feb 14, 2016
10,397
61,028
1,131
Wisconsin
Hmm, interesting! But a bit discouraging! Seems like i doesn't happen frequently... I didn't know a pullet could go broody!
Sometimes pullets will go broody but they can leave the nest close to hatching day. Some people have an incubator ready just in case.
When my hen went broody, I figured that was a good time. For her, both times she became broody in the spring.
 

TuesdayChickens

In the Brooder
May 18, 2020
16
23
39
Massachusetts
Sometimes pullets will go broody but they can leave the nest close to hatching day. Some people have an incubator ready just in case.
When my hen went broody, I figured that was a good time. For her, both times she became broody in the spring.

Good to know, I will keep an eye out for any broody behavior come springtime.. I do plan to get an incubator and hatch eggs regardless, but allowing a hen to raise her own just seems like a fun project! I would definitely keep the incubator then brooder at the ready in case anything wasn't working out.

Thanks for answering my questions! I am really just getting started in chicken keeping, and have a lot to learn!
 

JacinLarkwell

Crossing the Road
Mar 19, 2020
16,116
33,429
861
South-Eastern Montana
My phoenixes are the earliest I've had go broody (had a pullet bantam that wasn't layinh go broody for about 3 days, but she stopped as suddenly as she started)

My others were older before starting and actually completing. I had a BSL that hatched duck eggs at 2 or 3 years ago though, and they're not meant to be anything but laying machines
 

TuesdayChickens

In the Brooder
May 18, 2020
16
23
39
Massachusetts
My phoenixes are the earliest I've had go broody (had a pullet bantam that wasn't layinh go broody for about 3 days, but she stopped as suddenly as she started)

My others were older before starting and actually completing. I had a BSL that hatched duck eggs at 2 or 3 years ago though, and they're not meant to be anything but laying machines

That is very cool to hear about your BSL going broody! I had the most hope for my wyandotte, but good to know that there's hope for my BSLs as well! I know the instinct to set has been mostly bred out of the really heavy laying breeds.. I do have the chickens primarily for eggs, but the more I get into the world of chicken keeping, the more interested I become in expanding my flock!

Speaking of... I just looked up Pheonixes, so beautiful! There's another breed on my list :p
 

JacinLarkwell

Crossing the Road
Mar 19, 2020
16,116
33,429
861
South-Eastern Montana
That is very cool to hear about your BSL going broody! I had the most hope for my wyandotte, but good to know that there's hope for my BSLs as well! I know the instinct to set has been mostly bred out of the really heavy laying breeds.. I do have the chickens primarily for eggs, but the more I get into the world of chicken keeping, the more interested I become in expanding my flock!

Speaking of... I just looked up Pheonixes, so beautiful! There's another breed on my list :p

Where are you located? Hatcheries have them, but if you can get them from a flock that broods, they're more likely to have that instinct.

Also don't discount bantams either. Had a Japanese gal brood and foster 3 pheonixes when the moms quit that nest.
 

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