Which comes first the broody or the eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by nova022, Oct 9, 2012.

  1. nova022

    nova022 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 3, 2012
    Totally new to chickens and was wondering how the broody thing works. Does the hen start sitting on the nest and then begin laying eggs. If she lays only one egg a day, does she start sitting on the first one and if not, how do I know it is an egg she plans to hatch? How many eggs are usually laid for one hatching and how many days apart from the first to last hatched egg? Since I only have two nest boxes for four hens should I provide another nest box while the hen is on her eggs? Sorry for all the questions, but I though it would be better to know a little before hand.
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Hormone changes cause them to go broody. It's been largely bred out of hatchery birds, because they don't lay while they're broody. Certain breeds are much more likely to go broody than others.

    You're more likely to get a good hatch if you have a "broody pen," where she can sit without being bothered. It needs to be big enough for her to get up each day and walk around a bit, perhaps take a dust bath or preen, and of course eat and drink. If you let her sit on a regular nest in the coop, others will bother her, perhaps lay on top of her, she may steal others' eggs, and she may return to the wrong nest.

    Here are a couple of articles on broodies:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/broody-hens

    http://www.themodernhomestead.us/article/broody-hens-1.html
     
  3. nova022

    nova022 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the links and the information in your reply. I read the links and they answered most of my questions and offered a lot of information. I hope to get some hatching eggs in the spring if I have a broody to care for them.
     

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