We FINALLY have a broody hen! Our first of the year. Today, Mon 5/30/11 (Memorial Day!), Jason saw a hen in a nest box when he went to close in the chickens after dark. I went back out later this evening and counted her eggs; she had been sitting on three reals and two wooden eggs. I moved the three reals + 7 more reals just laid today into the dog crate nearby (all marked with an “X” with a pencil, just in case), gently and quickly moved her into it, and put the door on. She didn’t freak out and stayed on her 10 eggs, and even pecked at me when I tried to add more fresh bedding, so here’s hoping! Since she’s locked in the crate, I’m hoping she’ll stay there.
I’ll go out tomorrow and give her a chick feeder and waterer inside the crate, and I’ll plan on opening her door once a day to see if she wants to get out and stretch her legs (and poop, to be honest, because I don’t want to clean broody poop out of the dog crate). I’m also going to spread more wood shavings and diatomaceous earth inside the dog crate after dark tomorrow.
If all goes well, we’ll be due to see some broody-hatched chicks on the evening of Monday, June 27, 2011. Mark your calendars! 🙂
I’m overdue for a poultry count post. There’s a nice variety around here now!