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broody hens sharing a nest
Tue 7-Jun-11
7:19 pm
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jess
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I'm new to chicken keeping - have become very fond of my bonkers pekins (only persuaded at the last minute to get a few for the kids but now delighted by their personalities!)

We bought some fertilised eggs from a local agricultural show - 'Boris' (lavender pekin) helpfully atarted to sit on them about a week ago. But now Margaret (Partridge Pekin) has now joined her (same clutch of eggs). Do I leave them both to it? Do I remove  Margaret to her 'anti broody' hutch?

 

Any advice gratefully appreciated.

Jess

Tue 7-Jun-11
7:33 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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waveHello Jess, welcome to the forum!  I'm sure that Hattie will be able to help you when she has read your query, or Danuta.  Why not pop along to THIS section and tell us a little about yourself?

I'll try that again!

Tue 7-Jun-11
8:25 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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jess said:

 Do I remove  Margaret to her 'anti broody' hutch?

Yes, according to Fiona. Let's see if Hattie agrees.

Thanks for posting your question, Jess, and I hope you drop in now and again.

Never knowingly underfed

Fri 29-Jul-11
11:45 pm
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Terrier
York

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Hattie, any thoughts on this?

After moaning I have not had a chicken go broody, I now have 2.

The little game bird is 2 weeks in to her hatching run, and now a welsomer has joined in the fun and unfortunately want's to sit on the same batch of eggs, it's funny but sad to watch, the game birds are only tiny and the welsomer is a big hefty lass, so guess who's winning. the poor little game bird keeps trying to climb over her and get back on them.

Sat 30-Jul-11
4:29 am
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Hattie
Bucks/Oxon Border

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Janet, I would try to separate them & put each of them into their own secure space with their own eggs if possible.  If the eggs are a mixed bunch from all your hens I would choose the smallest ones for the game bird & leave the larger ones for the big girl.  One thing to remember is that game birds have a reputation for not making good mothers. I have no experience of them.

I have had 2 or 3 hens go broody together in the past but this has always resulted in chaos, broken eggs plus fighting & jealousy at hatching time. I always try to keep any broody & her eggs shut away from other hens as otherwise you can suddenly find all your hens will suddenly get the urge to join her & your egg supply will stop completely.

Good luck.  wave

 

"The beautiful is as useful as the useful...perhaps more so."

from Les Miserables

Sat 30-Jul-11
11:22 pm
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Terrier
York

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Cheers Nadine

well it would seem that the game bird has gone off her broodiness and left the welsommer to it. However I think I'll separate her as you suggest, if you move her and the eggs to a separate pen, will she still settle back on them?

Sun 31-Jul-11
10:40 am
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Hattie
Bucks/Oxon Border

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Hi Janet,

This afternoon take a shallow seed tray filled with wood-shavings or straw & make a little shallow nest  in it for all the eggs & let her climb back on them & settle down. Leave her till it is dark & then cover her with a light piece of cloth (I use an large old dark silk scarf; being in the dark keeps them calm). Carry her to the new home which you have previously prepared with new bedding which is similar to the stuff in the seed tray (my maternity home is an ancient rabbit hutch). Just place the eggs in the tray with her on top straight into the new home, don't take the eggs out of the tray till the next day by which time she should be totally used to the new surroundings.

This is just the way I have developed over the years.....it works for me most of the time but if you have a really jumpy hen you may have to try it a couple of times.

It doesn't surprise me that your game hen gave up....she probably would have done that at some time later, even if the big girl hadn't taken over. 

Good luck  wave

 

"The beautiful is as useful as the useful...perhaps more so."

from Les Miserables

Sun 31-Jul-11
11:33 pm
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Terrier
York

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Cheers Nadine, I'll have a go at that tomorrow, we have an old rabbit hutch and so may use that.

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