Suprise broody hen=fall chick!

dozen chickens

14 Years
Apr 17, 2007
Western Colorado
I have had chickens for 4 years now, during which time we have had broody hens, and roos, but never hatched any chicks. I knew there was a broody hen staying up in the hay barn. I have 33 hens, 1 banty roo, and 2 turkeys that free range during the day, and we close their coop at night. Today I went out and threw scratch, low and behold the broody hen shows up and moments later a chick running behind her peeping!!! The broody hen has probably 10 or so eggs that she has been sitting on, up on the top of a stack of hay. We are in Colorado, nights are currently dropping to about 42*, but will be dropping more soon. I rounded up chick, food and water, and returned them all to the top of the hay where the rest of the eggs are, and mama hen followed. However, I have no idea what to do from here on out. Should I move hen, eggs and chick(s?) to the coop, leave them where they are??? I would appreciate any suggestions!
Candle the eggs and see if there's live chicks in any.

If she got up with her chick, she probably figured the eggs were duds and abandoned them. After the 1st chick hatches, she only sits for another day or two to give the others a chance to hatch, then she gets up to take care of the chicks that hatched. I doubt she'll sit back on the eggs, although she might sleep there with her chick.

If the other hens were still laying in her nest, she may have developing eggs that aren't ready to hatch, yet and you'll have to put them in an incubator to get them to hatch.
Hey you
Southernbelle is dead on. Don't worry about the cold weather... mama's made for keepin' her little ones nice and cozy. But definatly candle the eggs and if you need a bator just let me know. I've got a genesis 1855 that rocks, just call.
Even if you don't have the space for them... I've got some older hens that need to be rotated to the soup pot soon.
Chick is gone! No idea what happened, hen is up there on the eggs, but chick was no where to be found. Don't know if the other hens got it, or if the dog got it, or a predator, no idea. bummer!
Another one has hatched. I went ahead and put her, eggs, and chick into the "nursery" coop. She was not happy about the move, but I didnt trust that the chicks wouldnt fall down into the hay, etc, so I thought it was the best idea. I'm trying to leave her alone for the first few days as much as possible, so we shall see how it goes! It's supposed to get down into the 20's tomorrow night, and the following night, so hopefully they will fare fine on their own.

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