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What does "occasionally broody" mean?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by fatcatx, Apr 12, 2013.

  1. fatcatx

    fatcatx Chillin' With My Peeps

    We're picking out our first chicks this month. So many fun choices! Several of the breeds we are looking at are noted as "occasionally" or "infrequently" broody. I was hoping someone could quantify that for me. Does that roughly mean once a month? Once a season? Only months that end in zero? (haha!) I'm sure a lot of it comes down to the individual chicken but a little info would help us narrow down our choices. thx!
     
  2. Keltara

    Keltara Chillin' With My Peeps

    What a chicken tends to do is no guarentee that they will do according to description. I have Buff Orpingtons. They are hens that tend to go broody often, but I have 3 hens which we raised as day old's that are 2 years old and we have 3 that just turned 1 and none of our hens have ever gone broody.

    On another note....if you still have not made up your mind, please let me educate you on the breed that I keep! They are of course Buff Orpingtons, and I wrote a really comprehensive review of that you can see along with lots of photos by clicking here. I really can't say enough about them!!


    Kelly
    ✿​
    Our Country Chronicles
    ✿​
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2013
  3. fatcatx

    fatcatx Chillin' With My Peeps

    LOL - I am new this site and your review popped up on the side-bar a few days ago. It was so good I had to comment. You'll see my comment - Best Chicken Review Ever! LOVED the pool shot! I have gravitated to Orpoingtons ever since I was little and saw them at the State Fair. They got the three F's going on. Just so fluffy/fat/friendly looking. They are on my maybe list and I have been waffling on them, worrying that they would be too broody. (We're in the city and only allowed a few so broody doesn't serve our purpose right now.) You've convinced me that I clearly need to move them up on our list! [​IMG]
     
  4. Aumlet

    Aumlet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 12, 2010
    Carlsbad, Ca.
    What it means is:

    - If you don't want a broody hen, they are going to be broody way too often
    -If you wanted a broody hen, they will refuse to ever go there

    [​IMG]

    In my experience, hatchery stock tends to be less broody than any particular breed is said to be, while non-hatchery stock is about what you see listed in various places.

    Of my hatchery birds, only one has ever gone broody, and that was a Buff Orpington that went broody only once after several other non-hatchery birds did. She was 2 years old.

    Of my non-hatchery birds, all but 1 have gone broody at least once.
     
  5. Keltara

    Keltara Chillin' With My Peeps

    I just saw the review comment. Thank you!! I hope that since you are going to have a limited flock that you really do consider the Buff Orpingtons. They are such amazing "pets"! It was very interesting to see what Amulet said in the above post. I would imagine that what he/she said is true! My chickens are hatchery stock. I got them from Townline Hatchery in Michigan. Buff Orpingtons are said to go broody often and like I said, mine never have. Well, welcome to BYC, and soon to the wonderful world for chicken keeping!!! Whatever breed you do ultimately decide upon, I recommend you handle and love on them as much as possible while they are chicks. That way they will be more friendly. You are going to have so much fun!!

    I just wanted to share 2 more things with you.
    Go here to see more of my swimming chicken photos, and Go here to see a video of the chickens sledding!

    And also, since you are starting brand new, I wanted to share the good news of using sand in you coop. You will be so happy you found out from the ground up because it is THE BEST! Click here for that.

    Have fun with your new adventure!!!

    Kelly​
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  6. Daisy8s

    Daisy8s Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Central Michigan
    I'm commenting because I also have gotten all my birds from Townline Hatchery in MI (by buying individual chicks at a local farm supply store that is stocked by Townline).

    So, over the past two years I've gotten these breeds: New Hampshire Red, Araucana, Silver-Laced Wyandotte, and ISA Brown. None of those birds has ever gone broody in two years. But, I only have one bird of each breed so that's a pretty small sample.

    Here's the thing that I don't understand about people complaining about broody birds. I have another bird (unknown breed--from a local farmer) who goes broody all the time. She has successfully raised one clutch and would have raised several more if I'd let her. All I have to do, though, is remove the eggs. When I remove the eggs she lays more.

    Yes, she's grumpy and growly when I remove the eggs each day but being broody never stops her from laying more eggs. In fact, I think her broodiness leads her to lay more eggs because she wants that clutch so bad. She's a phenomenal layer--has laid almost every single day for two years.

    So, maybe it's just my hen but I don't see how broodiness stops a hen from laying. (So long as you remove the eggs every day.) Are there really broody birds out there sitting on empty nests and refusing to lay more eggs to fill their empty nests?
     
  7. Keltara

    Keltara Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think that the reason a broody hen is not something you want to encourage is this. Unless you have a rooster and actual eggs that you want her to hatch out, being broody is very hard on a hen. She has a very strong instinct to keep that clutch of eggs warm and protected. She will usually only come off the nest once per day for about 15 min. to eat, drink and defecate. It is a physical strain on a potential mama hen. If there are no fertilized eggs to hatch, It is just not something that you want to encourage your hen to do. Now I have never had a hen go broody on me, but if one did, I would definitely help her to come out of her broodiness just for the simple fact that I want her to be able to eat, drink, and forage since we don't have a rooster, and that is a lot of undue stress on a hen's body.

    Kelly
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  8. Aumlet

    Aumlet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My broodies will sit on nothing once they get going. Removing the eggs doesn't help. I have three in there right now. [​IMG] Great when you want babies, a pain the tush when you don't.
     
  9. fatcatx

    fatcatx Chillin' With My Peeps

    Then maybe I just don't understand exactly what broodiness is. I thought once they decided to brood, they were done laying until they snapped out of it (or had chicks). Maybe it depends on the chicken or breed. Thank you both for noting the hactchery. Maybe they've taken the time to choose less broody breeding stock (if that makes any sense!) Thinking maybe I need to quit focusing on the broody part of a particular breed since it the range is so large.
     
  10. Aumlet

    Aumlet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Carlsbad, Ca.
    You are correct about broodiness. Broody hens will "borrow" any eggs laid by other chickens, hence the need to keep removing eggs from under them. The broodies themselves aren't laying while in the zone.
     

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