February 18, 2011 at 6:41 pm #254493
one of my girls is continually going broody, and we are in a residential area so I can’t have a rooster 🙂 I’m just trying to work out what to do, either rehome her to someone who needs a broody chook or, would it be worth trying to get some fertile eggs for her to hatch, or will she just keep doing it once she hatches those ones?
Any suggestions would be great. I have limited space so would rather only keep chooks that are laying, plus she hogs the nest box and isn’t sharing much love with me when I try to collect the eggs each day!February 18, 2011 at 6:51 pm #491135
All your chooks will go broody at some stage and Australorps make especially good mothers. Silkies too. If you have the opportunity to put fertile eggs under her, that’s what I would do. She’s only doing what comes naturally.February 18, 2011 at 7:51 pm #491136
The other option is to break the broody cycle – I put my Australorp in a different pen which doesn’t have a nesting box. Because there is no dark place to hide, after 24-48 hours she is no longer broody. I put her back in the main pen and have no trouble.
A good anti-broody pen is one with plenty of light and air flow. The body heat that broodies build up dissipates and the hen recovers and gets back on her normal cycle. Some people dunk broody hens (as a last resort I hope) in cold water to break the broodiness.February 18, 2011 at 9:00 pm #491137
If you let her sit on some fertile eggs you’ll need a separate dry and secure pen and nest box for her and the chicks when they hatch.I have used a cockatoo cage with a wire base and raised off the ground to un broody chooks.You’ll need to decide one way or the other I think, I have read that chooks that just sit and sit lose condition.I am a chook newbie and wasn’t at all prepared for ALL my nine girls to go broody , but I have had fun raising lots of chicks this past six months……just be prepared with what to do with the cockerels!February 20, 2011 at 4:24 pm #491138
I am yet to have one of my australorps hatch their own eggs. Clumsy things are that big they keep smashing them. I incubate eggs and then stick the day olds under the hens and they are fantastic mothers.February 21, 2011 at 2:44 pm #491139
Thanks so much for the suggestions! I am a bit worried she might break eggs having read that, , she is on the larger side of life, and yes a tad clumsy! Perhaps day old might be the best bet so she has a “job” to do. I have a colorbond dog kennel inside their aviary for separation when needed, it might do the job then when I let the others outside she and the chicks can use the whole aviary for few hours.February 21, 2011 at 2:45 pm #491140
ps have broken her broodiness before but she just reverts back every time not long after!February 25, 2011 at 2:29 am #491141
She really wants to be a Mum!! Your aviary set up sounds fine.I have a Blue Australorp who hatched eggs with no disasters but she’s not that large a chook.She was a fantastic mum.In fact she’s just gone broody again for the third time in four months – I unbroodied her last time, so I’m going to have to make a decision too.Perhaps you could let your girl sit on a couple of eggs and have more in an incubator,or did you think you might buy day olds for her to look after? If so I suppose you could add them to ones she hatches? I don’t know if that works though – I’m no chook expert.February 25, 2011 at 10:08 am #491142
You really don’t need anything special to hatch chicks. You MAY need to provide them with a retreat space if other hens get pecky. We put a budgie cage on the floor in the coop and wire the cage door open so they can run and hide and be away from the others if necessary. Generally tho’, a good mama will stand guard and protect her chicks. Quite often, the other hens will rally like a community and help her out.
Anyhow, I would say she has been broody too long to put eggs under her now but maybe make plans for next time.February 25, 2011 at 10:50 pm #491143
BlueWren post=305029 wrote: wasn’t at all prepared for ALL my nine girls to go broody , but I have had fun raising lots of chicks this past six months
WOW all nine at once!
We had one of our girls go broody and while it may be natural (and wonderful)
(a) we’re at our max for number of chickens we can have so hatching out eggs wasn’t an option and (b) it was hot hot hot and she was in there all day, every day for weeks on end. Barely eating and dropping a LOT of condition.
We had been given various advice on what to do but I wasn’t keen to do them.
In the end, we let her out to free range all day (the girls get let out once a day for a while but not all day usually), and only put her back in in the afternoon. After three days, she was back to her non-broody self and had a ball bug hunting and the like in the meantime.
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