Very New...Help

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by cortezkid, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. cortezkid

    cortezkid Out Of The Brooder

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    My husband and I have inherited a crew of chickens. They are what I would call free range(?) They rooste at night in our trees and run our property during the day. The hens began laying about 1-1.5 months ago. We began finding eggs at various places all around our barn. Once we found where they were laying we started picking up the eggs daily. As this worked for a bit, generally they just began laying in new locations. In time we found the spot where the hens most perferred to lay (seemed they would stand in line to take turns laying in the same spot) We would pick up all eggs but one daily and they seemed pretty happy with the process.....for about two weeks. We finally purchased a few fake eggs to leave in their nests so we could pick up eggs daily. We also made more nesting spots avaiable as they did seem to wait inline to nest. Seemed as all was going well till a couple of the hens decided they no longer wanted to get off the nest. We removed the fake eggs and one of the hens left the nest while the other continues to sit on her nest (no eggs). In the meantime all the hens have stopped nesting in this location. Do hens lay for awhile then just stop?? We continue searching for new laying spots as we do not want more chickens running around we must have 12-15 running the property at any given time. I have a picture of the lil gal that wont leave her eggless post I will upload. [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  2. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    It sounds like you have a broody hen - and they don't lay when they are broody. Is she staying on the nest at night too? That's a clear sign that she's wanting to hatch some babies........
     
  3. cortezkid

    cortezkid Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes she does stay in the nest at night. It is apparent she wants to hatch, however there is nothing there for her to hatch. Since she has decided to stay put, the other hens have quit coming in and laying (goodness knows where they are laying now...or maybe not?)

    We worry she is going to starv her lil self as I dont think she comes out at all! I tried posting her pic but I dont see it anywhere.
    I have to sneek a bit of online time at work.....ouch!
     
  4. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    I don't know what to tell you about finding the new nests - I free range mine, but they have a coop with nest boxes and for them to sleep in. I have a few hens that will not lay in the boxes and every time I find one of the hiding places, they move it!

    I've never tried to break a broody of being broody - but I've seen several posts on the subject. You may want to do a search to see if any of the ways tried will work for you. Have you tried removing her from the nest each time you find her there? Do you have a coop? Could you relocate her to there? At least she'd be safer than sitting on a nest outside. If there is no coop, can you put her in a dog cage or something and relocate her to the house, garage, shed, etc?

    My broodies had e g g s under them, but one of them refused to leave her nest. I had to pick her up and put her by the food and water each day - and even then she wouldn't eat much. If you can't move the broody to a coop, I would at least try hand feeding her, or taking food and water right out to where she is and leaving. Sounds like she seriously wants to hatch some babies!
     
  5. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    Hopefully tomorrow I can make sense of that post [​IMG] [​IMG] Do you actually have a ROOSTER?
     
  6. cortezkid

    cortezkid Out Of The Brooder

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    The hen that is sitting is inside our barn in a very safe place (a horse feed dish with hay...no horse) I dont blame her for wanting to stay put it has been cold and rainy outdoors.

    We do move her to check if she has laid and let me tell ya she is a tough one who will take you out for messing with her. It is alwasy possible she moves during the day when we are at work....I just dont know. I will try putting food & water close by see what she does.

    in answer to the question do we have a rooster, we have several roosters. Each of the roosters has his own harum. The More mature Rooster has 5 hens that run with him, the other Roosters have 2-3 hens each. Each group roosts in a different tree at night. The hens that run with the older Rooster are the ones that were laying in our Hay room in the barn.....till this specific hen decided to stay put.

    One hen has recently desided to start laying in the hay room of one of our other barns. I think she must be a younger hen as her eggs are smaller.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2009
  7. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

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    What debiraymond was referring to is your first post on this subject. If you re-read it, you will see that everywhere you typed e g g, the word rooster was inserted. It's A p r i l 1 - and seems there is a little joke going on at BYC today! Makes for funny posts - but can lead to a little confusion!

    If you type e g g with spaces between each letter, it will show up correctly.

    Anyway, I would do as you mentioned and leave food and water close to your broody. Try removing her from the nest each time you see her on it - put her in the yard with the others. You may be able to eventually break her of it.
     
  8. cortezkid

    cortezkid Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks !
    I'll give it a try
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    The best way to break a broody is to keep her in a small cage off the ground with a wire bottom for three or four days. The wire bottom keeps her undersides cool, which seems to help. Give her food and water and she should be fine. Do not give her anything that looks like a nest or nesting materials.

    If you don't have the wire cage, any small cage will do, but it might take a little longer. Just find a way to keep her from going back to her nest.
     
  10. cortezkid

    cortezkid Out Of The Brooder

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    [​IMG]g]

    When I got home last Eve, we removed this persistant gal from her nest and closed her out of the barn....boy did she pitch a fit! We removed all the hay from her spot and when it started getting a bit dark we opened up the barn door again. She was cute as she quieted down and sort of sneeked a peak around the door, hurried in and once again pitched a fit that her comfy nest had been destroyed. She then made herself a nice little spot on the hay stack where she was happily nesting still the morning.

    The thought of putting her in a cage is like seeing I can kill myself....this lil gal is ready to kidd anyone who thinks they are going to get in her way. All my Chickens are pretty much wild.....in otherwords they own us, we certainly dont own them (chuckle)

    How long does it take them to hatch? I am seriously considering letting this lil gal have her baby (like I need more chickidies running around)
     

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