To move or not to move, that is the question....

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by korlia, Dec 9, 2013.

  1. korlia

    korlia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here goes, hope you can help??

    I am a very new chicken owner and first time broody!! I have read alot of threads on here about broody chickens and one of the concerns to be to move them once a day or let them be. There does not seem to be concensus on this? I would like to have your inputs please??

    My ons cochin bantam started acting broody about a week ago. At first she didn't look that committed. I then moved her to a small rabbit hutch with an enclosed wooden kennel at the back and a tiny run in front. Since then she has been serious about her broody business. I decided to get her some eggs and I gave them to her on Saturday (7th) my question is this. Since I moved her to the hutch on Friday I havent seen her off the eggs once. I know you say that they get off when we are not around, but I've also read about broody poop. Since she is alone in the hutch I would definately have seen a broody poop in there if she has made one and there is none? Which brings me to the conclusion that she has not been off?

    I do offer her treats by hand once a day, usualy a few mealworms or a bit of table scraps which she does eat. I have offered water which she doesnt want? There is also water and there usual feed available the whole day just outside the wooden kennel in the run. When I open for the other to free range I also open for her, but she never gets out?

    What do you suggest I do? Leave her or move her once a day. This is her first time being broody and I dont want to bother her unnecessarily?

    Suggestions and advice ALL welcome
     
  2. new breeder

    new breeder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    well i dont know a lot about hen but i think that , if its hungry she will eat,same for the water, maybe you need t put water and food closer, for me , i will not "free her" she know her job my instick, i think she will be fine .... :)

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Take your hand and gently lift her up so you can look underneath. You want to make sure she hasn't pooped in the nest, though you would probably smell it 10 feet away. [​IMG]

    It is their instinct to sneak food/water and pooping when you aren't around. Since she's the only hen in the area you have her in, start watching the food and water level. You will likely see it slowly going down.

    I would leave her unless you see evidence that she is harming herself. It is extremely rare, most hens will be fine.
     
  4. Peplers chicks

    Peplers chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Some of my hens does not goes of the nes for the first week, by the second week they maybe leave their eggs more or less three to four times that week, the last week she leaves either every day, or every second day, then the last two days mine does not leave at all again
     
  5. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    Leave her alone. She'll get off the nest when she needs to. There isn't really any specific time frame I can give you for when she'll get up. Some of my broodies get up every other day. I have one that I always worry about because she's gone up to five days before she gets up to poop. I can tell when mine get up because they tend to eat a LOT and make gigantic, smelly poo when they are up--and mine are kept in a little one-chicken and attached run "broody house" so they are the only bird that could have made the mess. I never, ever see them get up, however. Very sneaky.

    If you want to check under your bird just for your own peace of mind, you can lift her up and look underneath. Don't do it too often, however, because if she decides she's not sitting in a safe place she'll abandon the nest. If you want to do anything major like candle the eggs, do it at night with a red light so as to disturb her the least. But in general, it's best to let her completely alone.

    We have 4-8 broody hatches a year, and I've never had one harm herself. I did have one hen abandon her nest for reasons unknown last year (at day 19!) but that was the first one ever.
     
  6. korlia

    korlia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]Thanks for all the advice guys, for now I will keep my hands off!! [​IMG]Even though it is going to be hard..
     
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I figure this is how they were designed to reproduce, and it wouldn't work very well as a method of reproduction if the hen suicided, would it? They know what they need to do. I don't like messing with them at all. They go into that trance like state, and need much less food or water while they're brooding.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2013
  8. korlia

    korlia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just an update, she must have been up yesterday!!! Yay, after almost a week of sitting, found one big, what I assume to be, broody poop and half the food gone!! I feel a bit better and more at ease now. Thanks for all your experienced advice!!
     
  9. new breeder

    new breeder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i dont have any experiens but i am glad that i tell you my opinion, [​IMG]
    i wish for you t have good a verry good hatch [​IMG]
     
  10. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Glad it is going well so far!
     

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