So discouraged! Any solutions for broodies? Please?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by buckabucka, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. buckabucka

    buckabucka Crowing

    Jan 13, 2010
    Fairfield, Maine
    My Coop
    I have a persistently broody hen, 1 year old. We tried 3 -4 days in a wire bottom cage first (failed), so back she went for another 3 days (still broody). We let her get back in the nest box and gave a steady supply of ice-cubes, which didn't work either. Third trip in the cage, we set up a fan blowing on her underside for a few days, which did not work.

    Recently, we've stopped the cage, but have been bringing her outdoors whenever we are around, but now she has dropped way down on the pecking order and is constantly under attack. Will she just starve and die?

    I would give her a couple of eggs, but there are some problems with this:
    1. rooster is essentially infertile
    2. an area we sectioned off for broody purposes is already occupied by another hen and her chick (we bought hatching eggs that time)
    3. I have 12 chicks waiting to go outside (hopefully into the broody pen), and I really don't want to add any more than that this year.

    I have the wire-bottom cage in our coop. Does it have to be in another building, so she can't see the other hens? Should I leave her in there for a week or more? I provide food and water, but she doesn't eat much and I'm afraid she'll starve. Someone needs to market a miracle hormone treatment that can be put in the water!

    I appreciate any advice on this subject.
  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Box 'er up and send her to me! I'm having the darndest time keeping a broody going long enough to hatch out eggs this year. GRRR!
    Sounds like you've tried most of the things I'd suggest. Will she by chance adopt the chicks you have? Even if they're older, you might just put one or two in with her and see if she takes to them, of course when you can watch in case she attacks them.

    What breed is she? Not that that will help, I'm just wondering who is so dedicated.
  3. I put my girls up on wire and mist their bellies a couple times with cold water. Takes about 7-10 days to break them 2 weeks for more stubborn girls that wont give up.
  4. buckabucka

    buckabucka Crowing

    Jan 13, 2010
    Fairfield, Maine
    My Coop
    Thanks for your replies! I guess I did not realize that broody-breaking could take as long as 2 weeks in a cage. Back in the cage she will go, and I like the misting idea. Do I need to remove her from the flock?

    She is a buff chantecler, donrae. I'm just about ready to box her up! She was a great winter layer, so I'm hoping she'll get over this. My chicks are already 3 weeks old, - not sure if she would adopt one that age. Is that too old?
  5. Umbral_Necropolitan

    Umbral_Necropolitan In the Brooder

    Feb 28, 2009
    Bakersfield, California
    I usually just give my hen a bath if she stays broody longer than what is normal, then again my hen enjoys those. So it benefits us both.
  6. mark-hiett44

    mark-hiett44 Hatching

    Jun 3, 2011
    I agree with boxing her up and shipping to highest bidder which would prolly be posted my first today asking advice on why my hen is setting half a day
    But she's just getting started...I guess lol

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