Uncurable brooding hen

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by christineavatar, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. christineavatar

    christineavatar Chillin' With My Peeps

    339
    1
    114
    May 1, 2011
    Bolinas, CA
    I have a hen who has been brooding about 10 days now. I have followed the advice I have read on this blog but nothing has worked. I dunked her in icy water twice in one day, once in the morning and once in the evening. She got as mad as a wet hen both times but went right back to sitting on eggs. I have removed the eggs that are there daily. She then just moves off the nest and goes to another one with eggs. I've run out of tactics. How do I normalize this hen?
     
  2. mommto3kiddos

    mommto3kiddos Chillin' With My Peeps

    644
    1
    131
    Mar 9, 2011
    What about giving her a chick to raise? Or buy her a couple fertilized eggs to sit on.. She sounds like one determined girl [​IMG]
     
  3. MiddleChild

    MiddleChild Chillin' With My Peeps

    104
    1
    101
    May 3, 2011
    Eastern Massachusetts
    My broody hen looked so sad when I took her unfertilized eggs away that I ran out and got her a dozen (possibly) fertile ones. Five hatched and she is over the moon - what a great mom! Neighbors and I are totally charmed and learn new things daily from watching the circus. The lady I got the eggs from said she'd take back any I didn't want to keep, and a friend wants a pullet if I have a spare, so all are provided for. Let her be a mom - it's fair to her and great for you.
     
  4. aggie9296

    aggie9296 Chillin' With My Peeps

    960
    2
    111
    Jan 28, 2011
    Panama City, FL
    If you don't want babies, you'll probably have to lock her in a different pen with no nest box until she loses the urge. Wire dog cages or kennels work.

    Mine took 3 weeks to finally break. But it must be contagious, because I've gotten another one now.
     
  5. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    25,560
    67
    421
    Sep 25, 2007
    Michigan
    THe best way you can break a broody is by putting her into a cage with no nest box and a wire bottom. Some folks take a plastic dog kennel, cut the bottom out, and put hardware cloth on the bottom. Then, tie it up to a rafter (if you have a barn or other structure) so the cage is hanging off the floor. Or, you can put it up on cinderblocks. The idea is that it must be off the floor so that air can flow underneath her. She will not brood if it's not a warm, cozy place. If air is flowing underneath her, she'll be broken in no more than 3 days. I've never had it take longer than 3 days. BUT - leave her in for a full 3 days...if you take her out after 2 and she hops right back into the nest box...you need to get her right back out & start over. Of course, put feed/water cups in the front of the cage.
     
  6. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,042
    62
    221
    Jul 30, 2008
    Missouri
    The best method is the wire bottom cage raised off the floor. I will tell you that I have a 3 year old mixed bantam that started setting in mid March and has been that way ever since. She probably won't give up the effort until mid September or so. I've tried breaking her up and it doesn't matter how long I leave her in the cage it doesn't break her. The instinct in her is so strong that she isn't even a good mother. I've let her hatch eggs and given her chicks and she just sits, doesn't raise the chicks. I would have culled her but my grandson when he comes over wants to " go see the chicken he can pet". Again she just sits there, she ruffles her feathers a bit but doesn't even peck.
     
  7. christineavatar

    christineavatar Chillin' With My Peeps

    339
    1
    114
    May 1, 2011
    Bolinas, CA
    Thanks, everyone. I guess the raised wire floor box is the way to go!
     
  8. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    Quote:[​IMG] ICY WATER!! you are joking right....who in the world does that...lol...lol...that is too funny. I can imagine that hen thinking...OMG, here comes that *&^% bucket of cold water again... [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by