Transporting igloo hen+eggs


In the Brooder
12 Years
Oct 22, 2007
Albuquerque, NM
I have free range chickens on my fenced acre and the birds roost in the cottonwood trees at night. This summer, I had hens sitting on eggs in dog-house igloos and had some success with chicks. I could pen the momma+chicks up, and at around 8 weeks, let them out. No one lives on the property--so it was a gamble as to when momma was ready to take the kids up in the trees. Two mommas did well. One set of chicks dissappeared. Recently I had 4 7 week old chicks and their mom killed by raccoons--as she hadn't taken them up in the trees. I was crushed.

Designs are in the works for a new coup that we planned to build next year. It'll be large, near the trees, and going to allow the free-rangers to take big kids out through the top.

The hens have been laying eggs in the igloos, and we've really been enjoying fresh eggs! I figured they'll slow down as we're getting cool here. And as long as I took the eggs, we'd not have any babies until next year. BUT I have one persistent hen who is sitting on eggs. We've taken out the eggs and she refuses to budge. Plus other hens lay in there too. She's probably got at least 6-8 eggs now.

So, I want to bring her to my house which has a small, but enclosed backyard. 4-7 foot walls all around. South exposure plus sheltered pretty well. They should be safe here. Momma + kids can have the run of the yard, and I'll enclose them at night. They can practice getting up on things--and when they're good "climbers" I'll take them back to the property. I figure they need to be 8-10 weeks old.

My question for the forum is this. It is about 11 miles from the property to home. I can take street roads (not the freeway). I thought one night I'd cover the igloo (with hen+eggs) with a quilt and carefully put it in the back of the truck. I'd drive home as carefully as possible and put the igloo in the yard.

Do you think she'll ride OK?
Am I approaching the transport correctly?
I want to move her when the eggs are close to hatching. I think I'll put the igloo in a big cage of some sort, just to be sure I don't lose her when she wakes up in a new location.

I believe once the kids hatch out, she'll stay in the yard without a problem.

Any suggestions as to moving her are much appreciated. PS I hope I'm posting this question in the right place. Thanks for your help.


Wild Egg!
12 Years
Oct 13, 2007
Its worth a shot, the night time move, make sure you have some help with loading the igloo. I would also be sure to keep her inside the igloo - well fed and watered for a week or so, so she doesn't come out and take off right away - perhaps a small area outside enclosed?

She will probably want to get up and take her chicks outside when they're around 3 or 4 days old.

Good luck and post pics when you get it all set up!

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