Mama hen recommendations

organic_flutterby(5 MO)July 16, 2008

I would like to get a few hens and a rooster to start a little flock of my own. I have heard that so many popular chickens have been bred primarily to lay a lot of eggs but not to sit on them, that their mothering instincts have been bred out. Has anybody had this experience with their hens? What are good breeds to buy in order to have some chicks hatch naturally? TIA

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
flowersnhens(Maine 4)

Hi there, Silkies are egg hatching machines, and I have heard on this forum that buff orpingtons and austrolorps are also good setters. I had a silkie once that hatched eggs for as long as I had her. you can't keep them off of the eggs. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2008 at 5:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have a Rhode Island Red mix that is a great mom.My hens that have set the best are mixes.I read that if you have broody hens,they feel safe and comfortable-mine are safe and well fed and watered and spoiled.Banties also are supposed to be good at raising chicks.Posy_Pet

    Bookmark   July 16, 2008 at 7:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

Exactly as posypet & flowersnhens have said...I'll add that most of the big fluffy 'heavy' dual purpose (meat & eggs) breeds are usually good setters (cochins are great, large or small). My Americaunas go broody sometimes, but aren't reliable. Silkies & banties of course. I currently have 6 broodies dead-set on brooding: a Buff Orp, a New Hampshire, a blue Silkie, 2 mixed banties and a cochin. None of these girls could be moved with a crowbar, they are so fanatical. *L*

Leghorns & RIR have been bred by humans to eliminate the brooding instinct in favor of egg laying, and Cornish X have been bred for meat birds. The ornamental birds (think tall & slender), such as Polish, also rarely go broody.

What you can do to round out your flock is to have a few hens weighted for brooding (silkies, cochins, etc.) and a few of the 'ooh, I LOVE that breed!' for eye candy & eggs. :)

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   July 16, 2008 at 10:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have red sex links. Does anyone know how often they go "broody" and are they good mothers?

    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 5:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
flowersnhens(Maine 4)

I don't believe Red sexlinks go broody at all.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 7:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have several Buff Orpingtons who are very broody. I didn't let them set this year, but I plan to keep a rooster this fall so next spring they can raise their own chicks since they are so set on doing so!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 6:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I can't get my Australorps to get off the nests! Buffs also!

But my longest brooder is my little americauna.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2008 at 10:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
organic_flutterby(5 MO)

Thanks everyone, I'll keep this in mind and keep you posted.

Love the pictures, mailman!

    Bookmark   August 7, 2008 at 11:02AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
mean Turkey
My tom hates my daughter and all little kids is there...
Dorking rooster with frostbite
Hello, Our rooster suffered frost bite in the dip in...
Raw Milk
Where Can I find Raw milk in western washington?
Need help on choosing raw milk farmer
Hello, everyone, I have a little dilemma: I have a...
Protecting chickens from hawks
Curious how you're protecting chickens/ducks from hawks,...
Sponsored Products
Martha Stewart Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Martha Stewart Living Rugs Harmony
Home Depot
Porcelain Floor & Wall Tile: Daltile Flooring Monticito Alba 12 in. x 12 in.
$6.72 | Home Depot
Thermostatic Shower System, Head & Ceiling Arm, Handset & Body Sprays
Hudson Reed
Soft Table Lamp No. P3810 by George Kovacs
$790.00 | Lumens
Serena & Lily Wickham Shelter Bed
Serena & Lily
Thomas the Tank Engine Domed Keepsake Tote
$8.99 | zulily
Set of Four Kim Seybert Sea Odyssey Napkins
$128.00 | FRONTGATE
4-Foot Fatboy Marimekko Unikko Junior Large Bean Bag Chair - UNUNIKKO-BLK
$209.99 | Hayneedle
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™