Wow! Not one of the three broodies here gained weight! Even though Mary and Peggy are diligent eaters while brooding, they lost weight. I was afraid Ivy would fade away without encouragement.Now here's a strange thing.
The marans hens were not broody self sufficient. Even Ruffles as a second generation hen needed taking off her nest for the fist few days. She got the hang of it quite quickly but the original Marans were all likely to lose condition.
The original bantams which were not pure breeds (?) got off the nests every day and some would spend easily an hour, weather dependent, on eating bathing and letting the rest of their tribe know they were broody.
The mixes, Marans and Bantams are also broody self sufficient.
The next generations all get off their nests and maintain body condition to the point that some put on weight while sitting.
I will be doing that next year, I'm going to breed my new Cream Legbars with one of my Marans roosters.Me too! Sydney's hatch has given me confidence to try a hen hatch one day.
If I remember right they were wild for awhile, weren't they?