Ummm...can a hen go broody without a rooster around?!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by NewEnglandChick, May 18, 2010.

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  1. NewEnglandChick

    NewEnglandChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 13, 2009
    Midcoast Maine
    All right, I've got 1 RIR hen who has been sitting in the same nesting box for about 3 days now. I know she's not moving because two of the other girls usually lay in that same box and have now been forced to lay in a neighboring nesting box. She looks flattened out and keeps an eye on me when I feed them, change water, add treats and open/close the coop - but she doesn't make any noise or get up. This is only my 2nd year raising chickens so my inexperience causes me to question just about everything they do. I've haven't had other hens act like this, so has she gone broody? (She's almost 1 year old, btw).

    Here's my true ignorance...I have no rooster. Is it even possible for her eggs to hatch without a rooster around?! [​IMG] If long will she sit on them before she realizes nothing's going to happen?

    The other girls don't seem to bother her - they go free range during the day, and are perched on their roost at night - so do I need to seperate her if they're all still getting along?
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    You betcha she can go broody without a rooster around. She can't hatch anything without one though. Best get that girl some fertile eggs or read up on breaking a broody. There's lots of threads on how to.
  3. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 28, 2008
    Yup, she's broody. A hen can go broody with or without a roo. They don't know the eggs won't hatch. How long they'll set before they give up varies from hen to hen. I have an Asil that's content to sit around for 9 months on absolutely nothing. I gave up on trying to break her.

    No need to separate your broody. In fact it's probably best not to, then your other hens won't forget who she is.
  4. allen wranch

    allen wranch Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
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