Will she die of starvation

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by cary 1973, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. cary 1973

    cary 1973 Chillin' With My Peeps

    hello both my leg horns are broody again but this time I am letting them do what they do as there in there nesting box and on fake eggs. no my pheonix is still eating and drinking and she gets up multiple times a day to dust bath run around about 20 to 30 min each time so not too worried about her but my Lilly has not moved in 5 days i try and offer her water and even meal worms and all seh does is scream bloody murder at me when I go near here and fluff up her feathers. no her water and feeder is less then a foot away from her so i cant say she is not getting up to eat and drink but I really dont think so now I am very worried she will die from starvation or dehydration is she dose this for 28 days. we are still hiting the 70 during the day and are lows in high 40s. am i being a worry wart for nothing?
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    If she has food and water available she'll help herself if she needs it. Broodies do eat and drink way less than non-broodies and they do sometimes go a day or 2 without getting up. Keep an eye on the levels of the food and water dishes if she's the only one with access to it. Also, don't be tempted to feed her on the nest. It may make her defecate in the nest and soil the eggs.... And broodies do HUGE poops.
  3. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka

    Nov 27, 2009
    Wilmington, NC
    If these birds are sitting on fake eggs, I have to wonder why you are letting them do this? Hens don't have an alarm clock in their heads that goes off when their eggs should be "done" (the normal incubation period for chicken eggs is 19-21 days).

    Some hens will get up and leave eggs that don't hatch eventually, but "eventually" can be a very long time. In my own flock, there were 4 hens that started setting on eggs that I didn't particularly care whether they hatched or not, but I figured to let them sit until eggs that I had ordered came. Due to missed communication, the eggs I wanted got here at about the time the first eggs started hatching. I pulled the chicks out as they hatched, and when the new eggs came, I pulled the remaining eggs and put in the new ones. All 4 of those hens wound up setting for at least 40 days. I had a couple of Silkie hens that co-brooded all through one summer, while the other hens in the same pen kept sneaking eggs in the nest. Every day I'd check the nest, and remove the chicks and empty shells. Those girls wound up sitting for at least 3 months. The grand champion of broodiness around here to date has to be a Splash Silkie that I have now. She started setting on absolutely nothing in early Spring of this year (she didn't even have a nest; she was in a rabbit cage on bare wire); finally in July I gave her an egg to hatch to see if that would get her up (I'd begun to wonder if she still had legs!) When the egg hatched in August, she did finally start walking around with her chick, after an estimated 5 months of brooding. [​IMG]

    If it entertains you to let them brood things that won't hatch, and you don't need the eggs, I guess you can let them go until you get tired of them doing it. There are ways of breaking up a broody when you decide you want to get eggs again.[​IMG]
  4. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    I'm sorry, I completely missed the "fake eggs" bit. I thought they were hatching eggs for you. If you don't want them to hatch for you, you should break their broodiness. Broodiness and sitting is hard on a hen's body, so unless she's doing it for a purpose, i.e. hatching chicks, she shouldn't be doing it.
  5. phalenbeck

    phalenbeck Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 14, 2008
    Canton, N.C.
    I have broodys hatch 2-3 times a year, and when I have concerns layer pellets and water are placed directly in front of them, and they have all come through fine. To break broodys we lock them out of the coop for a few days.
  6. karlamaria

    karlamaria Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 30, 2011
    Western montana
    Sitting on fake eggs?. Why?.. Take them away unless your going to put fertile eggs under her. Break the broody if your not wanting her to sit on eggs . Broodies will come off a nest to eat and drink. But her sitting on fake eggs for no reason is silly. ( unless you are waiting on fertile eggs coming in the mail )
  7. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey

    Excellent advice from two of my favorite ladies.

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