another broody question

claraserena(4)May 4, 2008

My Buff Orphington has been setting for 19 days--eggs due to hatch Tuesday. I have her sequestered in the coop in an area about 4X4--made of old metal milk crates with openings plenty wide enough for a chick to get out. It is also chilly at night down to the 20's/30's

Is it better for the chicks to

1: take her and the nest and eggs to an indoor location before the hatch and risk that she will get flustered and leave the eggs

2: wait till the eggs hatch--the problem with this is that I will probably not be home when this happens--chicks could get out.

Last year I brought a broody in about 3-4 days before hatch and she sat tight and all went well. Is that typical?

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The broody should be fine. Put a waterer and chick feed out for the chicks in a few days. Your main worry would be predators...cats, dogs, raccons.
As long as the hen doesn't have too many eggs she will keep the chicks warm at night. What are your daytime temps?
Good Luck!

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 1:34PM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

She's in the temporary pen INSIDE the regular coop, right? And the coop is safe from predators? Then she should be fine. If it is drafty, you might set up a couple of breeze barriers. Drafts are actually more of a chick-killer than simple cold temps are.

But I have brought broodies with eggs about to hatch inside before, and the hen has never left the nest. So if you feel more comfortable bringing her in, do it. You'll know pretty much right away if she's going to settle down or not, and if it freaks her out too much, just return her to her milk crate pen.

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   May 6, 2008 at 12:55AM
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