two broody hens and no rooster WWYD

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by tara7815, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. tara7815

    tara7815 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do believe I have two broody hens.
    Everytime I try to collect my eggs they are setting on them. No matter what time of day. Even after dark.
    We have no rooster - we're averaging 8-9 eggs per day (and we have 9 hens).

    My daughter collects the eggs every day but I am concerned about her getting attacked thanks to so many horror stories. She is 14 so she could handle it but I still thought I'd come here for any advice you may have.

    I do have some eggs incubating and toyed with the idea of giving some to her but then how do I still collect my unfer. eggs every day without disturbing. I should add that I have TWO nesting boxes but they INSIST on using just this one (all 9 hens).

    I dont' know that I want to remove the broody behavior all together because I don' tknow what our future holds and I know that broody can sometimes be a rare thing.
     
  2. Lollipop

    Lollipop Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, a broody hen will not attack her. She might peck and grumble, but she won`t leave the nest to fly in her face or anything like that. Just keep collecting the eggs daily and don`t worry about it. If you do decide to give her some of your bator eggs, move her to a private seperate location and do it at night. I know people leave their broodies in with the flock sometimes, but your hen will always want that nest, if you don`t seperate her. Have fun..........Pop
     
  3. featherbaby

    featherbaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Even if going broody was rare (and it isn't) why would you want them to be? You don't have a rooster,so there's no chance they will brood eggs until a hatch. At some point when they figure they have enough eggs to brood on, they stop laying.

    I lift each one of mine out of the next box (same as yours they all pile into one) pet her and 'wake her up' from the boody stupor and put her head in the treat bowl. After I get each one of them out and distracted with treats, I get the eggs. In your case you might want to show them treats before you pick them up, HA! Whatever you do, don't let them scare you away, keep picking them up and touching them so they will eventually realize you are not a threat.

    I don't normally recommend using gloves to pick up birds but for your daughter a pair of gardening gloves in a subdued solid color like green might be wise (do not get red ones or black ones, these are 'danger' colors to chickens). When they go broody they enter a trance-like stupor and any disturbance they perceive as a threat. So of course they strike out at you. It's nature's way of protecting the next generation they're raising. I have one that growls at me from the nest box if I even pass the coop! HA! That's taking protection a little far, don't you think? Hey, I can take a hint! HA!
     
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  4. NottinghamChicks

    NottinghamChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    I had the same problem! No roo and 1 broody and they all use the same nesting box, LOL! After one week of broody I set out to a friends house for 6 fertilized eggs and moved her into a small dog crate but kept her within the coop. I did have to shut the door because my Brabanter kept going in there also to lay her eggs. Now I only open the crate up once a day after that chicken has layed and momma comes out to do all her screeching, jumping, pooping, etc., then goes back in and I shut the door again.

    Works well, but How do you choose if you let two brood? Maybe have this setup with the door open and let those two share the duties? At least it will free up the nesting box for the others? I can't wait to hear how this plays out. [​IMG]
     
  5. Suechick

    Suechick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If your bator eggs aren't too far along could give her some to hatch. But if she doesn't get to sit for close to 21 days she may not be ready when the chicks hatch. If you want her to mother the chicks for you she'll incorporate them into the flock and you won't have to worry about keeping them warm, or convincing the other hens to be nice. You may want to move her to a separate location though, so she doesn't have to be disturbed while sitting. But, if you don't want her to hatch chicks right now you should take her off the eggs and keep her away from the nest box for a few days. Since she has shown an interest in brooding, she will almost certainly do it again. Probably at least every spring.
    Good luck with her
     
  6. Suechick

    Suechick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, and if you want more info about broody hens, there's a huge thread over on the "Incubating and hatching eggs" board.
     
  7. tara7815

    tara7815 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I gave her some eggs to set on.
    Not from my bator but from another farm.
    She just went broody the last few days and these were just laid a few days ago.

    I am realizing they are both brooding in the same nesting box. they just sit there - all day long side by side. the other Hens just finally started using the other nesting box - I think they got fed up.

    How important is it to move them to a separate spot? - I don't have the best set up for separating.
     
  8. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    If everyone is happy, then leave them. Usually you separate them because the others lay in the box they're in and you end up with a lot of fuss, besides having the new eggs mixed with the one they're incubating. But if they're fine and the rest are laying elsewhere, I'd let them be.

    Oh - and make sure when the chicks hatch that they'll be able to get in and out of the box easy. Maybe a ramp or something and/or move the box to the ground if it's not already there.
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2011

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