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Taking a big chance on a broody hen?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by gritsar, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    I have a silkie that's been broody for about two weeks now. At first it was too hot for her to sit - temps. in the triple digits - but temps. have now moderated somewhat.

    I'm so excited because I got very special eggs in the mail this morning. [​IMG] The eggs are resting now and I plan to give them to my broody late tonight or early tomorrow. I just finished setting up a dedicated nest for her. It's a super large dog kennel that's always in the coop, so the birds are used to it. Right now she's sitting on a big ol' nest of golfballs in the crate after I moved her from a small nestbox.

    Now the problem. When the hen gets up from the nest each day for her daily constitutional, she sometimes goes back to the wrong nest. I'm afraid that if I don't lock her in the dog crate she will go out for a break and return to the wrong nest. I hate to lock her in (before hatch, when I will for the safety of the chicks). The first time she was broody I locked her in full-time, only opening the crate once a day. She went nuts on day 15 and refused to go back to her nest.

    I can't decide what to do!! Lock her in so that she doesn't end up on the wrong nest while her eggs get cold? Lock her in only at night? Or leave the door open and hope that the sight of so many eggs will draw her back to the right nest? [​IMG]

    Please give your opinion! TIA

  2. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Songster

    Feb 4, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    If she really likes to go for a daily constitutional, could you maybe lock her in the crate, but let her out at the same time every day for a quick break. If you stayed to watch her, or even went back after say half an hour, you could make sure she went back to the correct nest and then lock her up again. Hopefully that would be a good compromise that would save her getting cabin fever and abandoning her nest. Maybe you could even give her two breaks a day?

    DUCKGIRL89 Songster

    Apr 28, 2011
    I would say lock her in for the sake of the eggs.
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Thanks y'all [​IMG]

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