Sick or Broody?


12 Years
Feb 3, 2008
Fingerlakes Upstate, NY
I have two buff orp hens that are making me wonder. They are both spending the vast majority of time sitting in the nesting box. One has been doing it for close to a month. The other just started doing it the other day. What's up with them?

The one who’s been doing it for so long hasn't laid any eggs. But the one who started a short time ago laid one today. I just recently introduced a BR roo into the coop with them. I can understand if the one went broody since I did so, but what about the other? They've never been with a roo till now.

Obviously the one who has been at it for a month has had to eat and drink or it would be dead. I hope somebody can help me.
Are they clucking like a broody hen and fluffing their feathers and walking "funny"? Usually there are signs of broodiness right away.
Some of my hens just like to hang out in the nest boxes during the day and even sleep there all night....

Oh you don't need a roo for them to go broody....
Some of them do the loud "BUCK BUCK" but I'm usually going to work so I can't tell who it is. If I hear it in the morning I'll try and see who it is. I go to pull them out of the box and they put up a big stink, pecking, squawking, and squealing loudly.
Well, until you either "break them up" or they hatch something. If you want chicks, place some fertile eggs under them. If not, try cooling them off. They are "hot hens" right now.

Move them off the nesting boxes, ban them from the nesting boxes....I would say put an ice cube under them but not sure if that would work or not?

Use the search engine up top and see what others have posted. I know there is some good advice on how to break up a broody.
Place an egg near them. If they try to tuck it under then they're boody all right.

They may be broody for weeks, silkies can be broody for months!

Make sure they don't have any eggs under them if you don't want them to be broody. Many hens will sit even with no eggs just because their mindset to hatch chicks is strong.
Well, I’d say we have a winner!! I took an egg from another box and set it near one of them as she sat in her box. She stared at it. Then another bird jumped up on the perch to the boxes. The hen I’d put the egg in front of immediately tucked in under herself!! OK….

Test two. I pulled them both out of the boxes despite their excessively fervent objections!! I set them outside in the pen with all the others and right away, one of them began the loud “buck buck buck BUCKOCK!!” Their faces are beat red and their feathers are all fluffed up. They look pretty formidable strutting around in there.

Sounds like they’re broody to me!

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