To hatch or not?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by kheseman, Nov 18, 2016.

  1. kheseman

    kheseman Just Hatched

    14
    0
    14
    Aug 7, 2016
    I found one of my black star hens sitting on her eggs in the rafters of our shed. Should I let her stay or try to move them. I would like to let her hatch them but I'm concerned about the location. I don't want the chick's to fall when they hatch. HELP!!!! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2016
  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    31,697
    24,759
    736
    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Personally, I would leave her where she is and then move momma and chicks to floor level once they have all hatched. Moving her could result in her abandoning the eggs.
     
  3. kheseman

    kheseman Just Hatched

    14
    0
    14
    Aug 7, 2016
    Ok should I put nesting/bedding in there for her? I'm not sure how many eggs she has but I saw about6 around her that she was not sitting on. :(
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2016
  4. kheseman

    kheseman Just Hatched

    14
    0
    14
    Aug 7, 2016
    Also is it to cold to let her hatch them. I live in Pennsylvania. Should I bring the chick's in under a heat lamp once they do hatch or will they be ok with her? Sorry for all the questions. I'm new at this.
     
  5. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    31,697
    24,759
    736
    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    No need to apologise! You can try and give her some bedding to make a nest, sure (whether she will use it or not is another matter). I'd also suggest confirming the number of eggs she is sitting on. Too many and it could result in a very poor hatch rate.

    She should be ok with keeping the chicks sufficiently warm in winter. Some members hatch all year round, whilst others prefer not to have the additional hassle of catering for chicks in the winter. Maybe enter "hatching chicks in winter" or something like that in the search box and seeing what pops up. Sorry, i have no experience of hatching chicks in the winter (i live on the equator), so i can't advise.

    I hope that other members will be along soon to give you advice.

    Good luck
     
  6. kheseman

    kheseman Just Hatched

    14
    0
    14
    Aug 7, 2016
    She won't let us touch her. I will get an egg count once she moves to go eat. Will it hurt the eggs to get cold once she leaves to eat? How many should I leave under her?
     
  7. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    31,697
    24,759
    736
    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    What breed is she? And how old? In theory, she should only be off the nest for a sufficiently short period to cause the eggs no harm
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2016
  8. rebrascora

    rebrascora Overrun With Chickens

    3,444
    1,960
    283
    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    Hi

    I would leave her with no more than 6 eggs since we are getting into winter and put some nesting material in there whilst you are counting and removing excess eggs. I very much doubt she will object when she comes back and it will help to keep the eggs warmer whilst she is off having a broody break. It is also a good idea to make a lip along the outer edge so that chicks cannot fall out after they hatch.

    I've had them hatch up in the eves before and then moved them once they hatch. If you think about it logically then if the broody hen can provide enough heat to incubate the eggs, she can also provide enough heat to keep the chicks warm once they hatch.

    Yes it is OK for the eggs to cool slightly whilst she is off the nest for a broody break each day but in winter she can't afford to leave them as long as in summer obviously. A normal broody break in winter should just be 10-15 mins but hopefully she will know what she is doing. Make sure that food and water are readily available to her when she does get off....if she is bullied from food or the water is frozen when she goes to drink, this can lead to problems. Broody hens lose a lot of condition during the process of incubation and it is therefore important to ensure she has good nutrition. You could offer her a little scrambled egg whilst she is on the nest every so often, to keep her topped up. If it is dark up there, shine a torch on it when you offer it so that she sees it. Not saying to leave a light on up there as broody hens like darkness but just so that she can see the treat when it is offered.

    Good luck with her.

    Regards

    Barbara
     
  9. kheseman

    kheseman Just Hatched

    14
    0
    14
    Aug 7, 2016
    She is a black star. She is less than a year this isite her first hatch. I think we got her in march/April. So 8 months old I think.
     
  10. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    31,697
    24,759
    736
    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    I agree that 6 eggs would be fine. As its her first time, don't be too disappointed if things don't work out too well.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by