Hens Gone Broody


Throughout most of the summer we’ve had two and, at times, three broody hens all sharing the same nesting box. Let me tell ya, having to fight one broody hen when gathering eggs is quite a chore, let alone two or three. Normally I will take a stick, or whatever I can find, and hold the hen back while I reach in and grab the eggs. But with two or three in there, there’s no way to hold them all back, so I just brave up, go for the eggs and deal with the pain of being pecked from all different directions. It makes me laugh when my husband and kids gather eggs because off and on through the summer, they’ve come in saying, “Those (insert random not so nice word) broody hens are so (insert other random not so nice words.)” They can be quite irritating to deal with, for sure.

A few days ago I decided to let them have a few eggs to hatch. They’ve been dedicated and determined all summer long, so I figured, what would it hurt? Besides that, it would also be a nice break from being pecked every day. So I gave them 6 eggs to sit on. The next afternoon I went to check on them and found this…


That hen had run the others out and was sitting on those eggs. Now, it’s pretty hard to get a broody hen out of her nest, let alone two of them. So in order for her to get them out of there, she had to be pretty mean and cranky… and let me tell you, she is! I can’t imagine what she’d be like if she were to go broody on us. I’d have to say she’d be hatching her eggs because I sure wouldn’t be trying to gather her eggs.

I found out that she comes in every afternoon and runs the broodies out of their nest to lay her eggs. Then when she’s done, she leaves and the broodies get back in the box. So, as you can imagine, there’s a lot of drama in the ole hen house at the moment.

It takes about 21 days for eggs to hatch to be sure to check back and see if we have any new chicks. In the meantime, if you’re curious to see just how cranky that hen is, check out this video…



Shared at The Chicken Chick Clever Chicks Blog Hop

6 thoughts on “Hens Gone Broody

  1. tbnranch

    It’s crazy. I’m fighting the same battle as you. My hen decided to be broody next to the feeder and won’t let anybody near it. She is the worst hen ever when she’s broody, otherwise she’s very sweet. I separated her for a week, I let her out today because she didn’t seem broody at all. Within minutes she was back to being a crab apple. I give up. lol

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  2. Carole West, Garden Up Green

    I know this battle well. I had a hen go broody twice and then my husband said let her raise the chicks and she’ll stop. So I did that had a great experience and after they were raised back she went to sitting on eggs again. I guess some hens just want to be mothers.

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    1. humblelittlehomestead Post author

      Yeah, it seems like once a hen makes up her mind there’s no changing it! Ha! It’s good to hear you had a great experience letting her raise some of her own. We’ve tried once before, but the chicks died before they hatched. I hope it works out better this time.

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