Relocate or not relocate broody hen

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by afey1, Jun 10, 2011.

  1. afey1

    afey1 Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 23, 2010
    The last time I gave my hen some eggs to hatch, i put her in an area next to all girls by by herself. Worked out great! [​IMG] This time around a friend told me all her hens hatch them in the group (same area), so 18 days ago I watched her come and go to her nest. Sometimes she would leave for a bit and other times she would get kicked off the nest. She would sometimes find her way back or one of us would put the eggs where she was at.. [​IMG]

    Well about a week and a half ago, I was checking on them (eggs) and 1 was broken. chick of course was dead. [​IMG][​IMG] This morning I found an egg out of the nest, slightly (surface) crack . Put it back in with Momma and now it's gone! NO shell! NO Chick! No nothing! [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG] Now I'm wondering as the chicks hatch this weekend with the adult hens around will they try to hurt them or kill them before they get out?

    I'm worried about the 2 eggs left!!! [​IMG] I do have a nursery attached to the coop with 6 - 10 week olds and 6 - 6 week olds. I was thinking of moving her in there with a nesting box and hope
    I'm giving the 2 eggs a chance to live..

    ANY IDEAS??????
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Moving a broody while she is setting is risky. The one time I tried it, the broody freaked out, frantically tried to get back to her old nest, and ended up abandoning both nests and her eggs. You can, however, move them once the chicks hatch; she will stay with her chicks wherever they are.

    The one that cracked then disappeared I would guess was eaten by mama. Maybe the chick was dead, and it is their instinct to clean up the nest. It doesn't mean she harmed the chick/egg, at least not on purpose. You may still get two good chicks out of this. Even if they are isolated, they can accidentally damage an egg.
  3. mmaddie's mom

    mmaddie's mom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Do I understand right?... you want to put her in with your other babies? or will you be moving then out? She will probably go after the other babies if left in with her!
  4. afey1

    afey1 Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 23, 2010
    The younger ones have been in th coop for several weeks now, (nursery area) with chicken wire separating them all. Even in the play area they are separated by wire...
    Last week I had 2 of my 5 week olds fly out into the adult area and 1 was actually laying near an adult and the other was walking around..

    Doing the nursery this way has help with joining the two groups together when it's time. And when I do it, it is normally near dark... Works great!

    I'm going to pray that God will help her with this change and that by Sunday, we have 2 healthy baby chicks...
  5. carrlr

    carrlr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2010
    Southern Illinois
    I'd like to see some ideas too. I had my first broody this year, a BO. I took the advice not to relocate her. She rarely left the nest, so I ended up providing food/water to her. Unknown to me, others continued to lay in her next, and she ended up with 26 eggs. Which she faithfully brooded. When day 21 came and went, I had to decide what to do. I let her go for about another week because frankly I didn't know how long some of the eggs had been with her. When I removed the eggs they were in various stages of development, and none were alive. In hindsight, maybe i should have relocated her. I was just concerned she would have abandonded them all together. She was faithful to the end, when I kicked her out of the nest.
  6. 2overeasy

    2overeasy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2010
    Birchwood, TN
    I have relocated 3 times and have had mixed results:

    First was a BO that I moved around day 16 or so. Moved her to one side of henhouse by herself. Put a storage container with some shavings and the eggs. She didn't want back on them. So after about 30 minutes I put screen over the topc and locked her up overnight. Next morning I took off screen and she did the rest from there til hatch then weaning at 4 wks.

    2nd was an EE nesting under porch. Moved her chick brooder in the hen house. Opened lid so she could move around and an hour later saw she was laying NEXT to the eggs not on them. So I put her on them and stayed til she settled. She's been hatching since yesterday and has 4 so far!

    Day after EE went broody, a cochin did. Moved her on same night as EE but to a homemade box on floor of house. Closed her up and left her closed up with food and water for 3 days. On the third day after being closed up I felt she would return if she needed to go out, I took off lid. Found her 5 hours later on the old nest with no eggs under her. Original eggs were cold. I put her back on nest anyway. Today is day 25 and still no chicks. Not sure what I'm going to do there...

    So, based on my experiences (albeit, limited), I would either not move the hen and take your chances, or move her to a box small enough she is forced to sit on eggs and keep her closed up til you can maybe trust her to stay.

    Hope this helps, and good luck!
  7. afey1

    afey1 Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 23, 2010
    Good morning everyone... Yes, good news !! [​IMG] ! I moved the girl with eggs to the nursery, mom was to upset. So after 15 minutes I let her walk back into the coop. And she went right into her nest,
    so I put the eggs with her... Well yesterday 6/11 we were blessed with two beautiful babies!!! 1 cream and 1 black...

    I also treated her extra by bringing her food and water. I built up the pine shavings next to the nest in case one of the babies fell or walked out. Put a small waterer next to that area .. Well this morning, Momma and babies are down in that area now.. All look good...

    I think all would have been good with the nursery if I started her in it from the beginning...

    Thanks everyone..


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