Does anyone have any suggestions / knowledge on how to deal with a broody hen? She’s taken to the nesting box, rarely venturing out except for a little water. Her last egg was yesterday which I took out as soon as I saw it. I’ve not seen one yet today but she’s a big Maran so could be squatting on it. We’ve no cockerel so there’ll be no chicks. Any ideas how to tempt her out or “de-brood” her please? We only have 2 chickens so her friend is wandering around alone, looking very forlorn.
When I read the title…for a brief nano-second… I wondered which of us forumites you were referring to
soooooo sorry Valerie - it just sprung into my head and I couldn’t help it Essentially I haven’t got a clue…way outside my field/s of expertise
Ha ha ha, you’re so mean!! Mind you, if she keeps puffing up and glaring at me she’d better look out.
ah broodies, I’ve got three, what fun. And not a single egg they’re sitting on but they’ve decided to fluff up and grump. Two are actually in the same nest box and grumping away like mad. You have to get their bums cold and remove them from the nest and put them on something cold. One way is to put them in a wire dog cage (a ‘sin bin’), raised on bricks, so a cool current passes underneath their bottoms. But persistently removing them from the nest will either break the brood or force them to find another place, so the sin bin approach is best. Two days of that and they generally get themselves back to normal.
does it work on humans too
I just went to check on her - fluffed up and snarling! Jeeze, Hitchcock would have loved her. I don’t think I can lift her out. Would one of those plastic frozen cooler packs work do you think, if I can slide it next to/behind her? I’m so glad I’m not the only one, Sandy
Mine take it in turns to go broody every year, putting their bum in a bucket of cold water does the trick!! but to be honest I just lift them out and put them down by the water & food then let nature take it’s course . All of ours will fluff up and twitter at us but we just ignore them & out they go
I use our cat carrier, with a mesh floor of chicken wire on a wooden frame. 2 days minimum in there, out of their comfort zone, covered over so in the dark and somewhere out of the hen house. No food or water, and they will forget they were ever broody. Old french remedy, might seem a bit extreme or even cruel, but it works and they have no ill effects afterwards.
that’s a good idea, a cooler pad under her bum. Might work. I’ve just hoisted two of mine out of the nest for the umpteenth time today and stuck their bums in a bucket of water … much screeching (them), splashing (both of us) and getting soaked (me).
The cooler pad is in. She is definitely unimpressed and was screeching like a pterodactyl. The other one, plus two dogs, came running thinking she was hurt. And she’s still in there. If she’s not out tomorrow, plan B …
I had an excellent hen who went broody every year and hatched out 12 eggs each time, excellent mother. Not too horrible either. In Scotland they say ‘clocky’ for broody but that may be specific to Aberdeenshire.
I’m leaving her for today - she’s becoming stressed because I’m out checking on her. But she’ll be booted out of there tomorrow, squawking or not. With the hot blast forecast to arrive, she needs to be out eating and especially drinking. Full body armour may be required … ho hum.
Have you got one of those lawn sprays that has a bar going back and forth, set on ‘not too powerful’? My hens loved it.
I’m afraid the most advanced watering system I have is a grey plastic watering can. But Brownie actually loves that and toddles around after me to chase any rivulets. I might rig up something ‘drippy’ for them to play with. Good idea, Veronique - thank you.
If she wants to be a mother could you not get hold of a couple of fertilised eggs and let her sit and raise them…??? Maybe a daft idea as I don’t have hens…I raised a solitary chicken years ago who had been attacked to the point of her head almost being severed from her body…endless visits to the vet who said that chickens don’t respond well to antibiotics…,stitches in her neck…she lived a good while after her ordeal but I’ve never kept hens since probably because of her…x
I can’t help but imagine a massacre - three cats, always hunting, especially mice … and little birds. The dogs are okay with the big scary chickens but I’m not sure about little ones. They could very well try to protect them once they know they’re ‘family’ but there’s no guarantee.
What breed of dogs do you have…??? I can well imagine the difficulty with the cats…absolutely no telling them what they can’t do…x
They’re all mutts but one is a spitz cross - all he does is growl at squeaky toys - the other two are hunters, a spaniel cross and a big brown unknown, looks a bit ridgeback, but he’s definitely a hunter. He bays instead of barks and caught and ate a pigeon once. He sniffs the chickens and makes sure they’re okay, and has done the same with neighbours’ chickens, not a feather ruffled, but little ones? I’m not sure.