3 hens 2 roos

Discussion in 'Broody Hens & Egg Laying' started by Firstman, Oct 19, 2020.

  1. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    She's not truly broody, her hormones are all over the map at this point. It's why I don't trust a first time broody when it comes to leaving eggs for them to hatch.

    But it sounds like as she matures she's going to be a good one for hatching peeps successfully.
     
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  2. Firstman

    Firstman Member

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  3. danathome

    danathome Well-Known Member

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    Probably for the best to break the broodiness.
     
  4. danathome

    danathome Well-Known Member

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    Can we predict when she will be broody again . Or it's just natural ??
    The roos are getting restless being away from hens. Lol

    When I want a hen to brood, I just leave the eggs in the nest or replace them with dummy eggs as they are laid. Usually, when there's 10-15 eggs, or less, the hen goes broody (this only works with hens that are known for broodiness).
     
  5. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    Broodiness is hormone driven, when her hormones for hatching are high enough she will retreat to the nest to get down to business.

    Too bad, so sad for the boys. Young males can be hard on hens because they don't have any manners at all. It's only once they've matured that they really become an asset to the flock.

    I had one young roo that I wanted chicks from. Problem was, he was way too aggressive when it came to breeding and scared the hens. I had one hen I knew wouldn't settle for rude behavior and put her in with him. He charged her, that's all she needed to know. She went after him and pounded him into a corner. He tried that tactic again and she had him cowering in a corner again. When his lessons were all done I could put the more passive hens in with him.
     
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  6. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

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    I make it a practice to steer clear of any growling females...
     
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  7. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

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  8. danathome

    danathome Well-Known Member

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    Yes, hormone driven, but I am positive that the presence of eggs stimulates the production of those hormones.
     
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  9. Overmountain1

    Overmountain1 Well-Known Member

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    Good informative thread! I’m trying to understand the eggs staying warm in the beginning part though; I know they will have the nest with several to many eggs gathered under them; how do they get to the point of having so many eggs there, that weren’t under the chicken to start with? I am assuming in the beginning the eggs don’t have to stay as warm? Ignorance here, so speak to my ignorance. Thanks!
     
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  10. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

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    Egg factoid stuff...so multiple chickens will lay in the same nest, the eggs don't really start to develop until the broody hen has the clutch size she wants, then she gets serious about sitting. If there are too many eggs, sometimes she will attempt to sit on them all, but eventually, she will push some out. Some birds are more species sensitive than others with this. I have had Banty hens that are fiercely protective and will try to hatch anything. One odd fact is the last egg laid is often the first to hatch. I number and date every egg, whether in the incubator or under a hen and I always keep hatch notes. There seems to be some limited egg to egg communication around hatching time. The more broody the hen, the more likely she is to accept other eggs you give to her. Broodiness often affects the hen house pecking order. Sometimes, the mild mannered hen at the bottom becomes a fire breather when sitting. Having the chicks trailing around also tends to increase rank. Again, some mild mannered fearful hens will very fiercely protect their chicks against a predator and lay down their life without consideration.
     
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  11. Overmountain1

    Overmountain1 Well-Known Member

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    Awesome- thank you!! That helped- I look forward to the day! I am so amused how mine have stayed with their own breed in the coop so far, too. TinyRoo has his two porcelains, the two partridge boys are still buddies- act like siblings all the way, it’s funny- and then the originals, Jackie and Chip- she wants NOTHING to do with anyone else yet. Makes for entertaining moments bc the two poofy boys want to edge in. And then run like their tails on fire when Chip comes to ‘rescue’ her and simply pushes them away. Sorry, sort of related to breeding there loosely...

    But really- awesome and thank you.
     
  12. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    And a perfect example of why they can be so addictive.
     
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  13. danathome

    danathome Well-Known Member

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    Most birds do not start incubating until the full clutch is laid. This ensures that all the eggs will hatch at about the same time. Up to that point the egg's temperature is whatever its surroundings are. Eggs can stay viable even when the temperature goes down in the upper thirties. Embryonic development starts when the eggs are kept warm; app. 100 degrees F. by the brooding parent. The bird keeps the eggs at a fairly constant temperature 24/7 until the eggs hatch. The bird leaves the nest only for short periods of time. Most people think of a hen keeping the eggs warm when the outside temperature is cooler. The hen's body also insulates the eggs when temperatures rise above the desired temperature; so if the day is really hot in the mid or upper 100s the eggs will still be at the desired 98-100F.
     
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  14. Overmountain1

    Overmountain1 Well-Known Member

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    Excellent! Thank you for spelling it out for the newbie here, I think I was stuck on how they stayed viable, but I get it now- it was a question that always made me wonder. Thanks for clearing that up for me, and then some! Love to pick y’all’s brains!
     
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  15. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    And if the temps are high enough the eggs can begin to develop before either the hen going broody or putting them in an incubator.
     
  16. Poultry Judge

    Poultry Judge Moderator Staff Member

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    I remember that Emu eggs would start to develop, albeit very slowly, above 70 degrees F.
     
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