Someone is hiding eggs in the nest....

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Kaceyx73, Jan 21, 2011.

  1. Kaceyx73

    Kaceyx73 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok, my 6 month old RIR (hatchery) pullets have already proven to be little egg laying machines. After 3 full weeks of laying, they are at 40 for this week alone, from 11 little prissies. Today I got an interesting surprise. I thought they didn't lay many today, but upon closer inspection one nest appeared to be fluffed up. Normally the straw is fluffed up when I change it, or if I add to it on cold nights. After a few hours, it always looks like someone has been laying there. Well, this particular nest was fluffed up nicely, and through the straw I just did see what appeared to be an egg... nah, it was 3 eggs, all down in the straw a couple of inches, and well covered up.

    I realize that in the wild this would be common. Is this a fairly common trick on the part of hens out of habit, or could I have one getting that urge.... ?!?
     
  2. chickendude1

    chickendude1 Out Of The Brooder

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    Rhode Island reds usually dont go broody. I have once had a gold comet brood before but she gave up on her eggs. So if one of your rhode island reds does go broody dont let them hatch there eggs they may result i no chicks at all.
     
  3. Kaceyx73

    Kaceyx73 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No chicks at all? As in they aren't proficient at it? I do understand that hatchery girls aren't likely to go broody... but if one does... they can't hatch eggs? Or you mean they will likely give up on them?

    I'm not disputing you, just making sure I understand what you mean.
     
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, she might give up on the eggs, but then again, she might not. I would not move her though, if you can keep other hens from laying in her nest.

    However, I have never heard or read about fluffing up and burying the eggs as a sign of going broody, when they are doing that, the stay on the nest and get mean.

    I am wondering, do you have a pack rat? Or some other guest in your house?

    MrsK
     
  5. Kaceyx73

    Kaceyx73 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A pack rat? Hmm, maybe. I don't know if hiding eggs means she is going broody, or maybe they are playing games with that crazy guy that comes and steal their eggs everyday. That's what I was wonderin. One day the nest looked normal, the next it was fluffed up. My girls have a lot of personality, so what the issue is... well, that's what I was hoping to figure out from you guys. I also don't know which one did it. If she does it again, I'll be sure to snap a picture of it and post it.
     
  6. arianna

    arianna Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am watching your post because one of my white mix d'uccle bantam is doing the same. She is hiding her eggs under the hay, and since I'm keep taking her eggs she is constantly looking for new places to hide her eggs. She even went outside the run through a small opening and hide an egg in the dog house and then tried to cover the egg with the dog bedding. She is very determined to hide her eggs from me, and I wondered if that's how they do when they go broody.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2011
  7. ajacskr

    ajacskr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a few hens that like to hide eggs and they dont even have to be their own. But when I have found them hidden is usually a couple of days before a cold snao or a harsh snow. Maybe They can predict the weather better than the weather man. I use shavings as nesting materials, so I always run my hand through the shavings just to make sure. Besides, my hens always seem to like a fresh nest. Weather or not it is fresh. [​IMG]
     
  8. Kaceyx73

    Kaceyx73 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The nest is checked everyday, and the fluffed up straw made it kind of obvious that something was different. With 3 hidden, I have to assume they weren't all hers...lol.

    As for the changing weather... well they are calling for another cold snap and wintry mix next mon-wed, so maybe? Interesting thought, or at least observation. I guess folks like Arianna and I will have to pay attention to the weather and see if that holds true. Anyone else noticed such a pattern? I haven't, but mine just started laying between the last 2 cold snaps, Dec 30.
     
  9. Kaceyx73

    Kaceyx73 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Anyone else had a hen do something like this?
     
  10. spiritdance

    spiritdance Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My little golden laced bantam cochin has been hiding her egg and anyone else's who may have laid in "her" nest for the last week or so, and this is the third time she's gone through this behavior. I too figured she would be sitting tight and getting pecky if she were trying to brood, but then my hubby reminded me that hens don't "sit" until they are almost done laying so the eggs will hatch close together. He suggested that maybe Lacey (my little banty) is wanting to sit but she's waiting until she has more eggs in the nest before "sitting tight". I know my cockatiels used to do this ... lay the first 3 or 4 eggs then start incubating once they were almost done laying. Could this be the same thing these chickens are doing? I've been tempted to sacrifice a few eggs to find out, or maybe replace the buried eggs with golf balls and see if she starts sitting them after a few days.
     

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