Is My Chicken Broody?

From time to time your chicken may go broody. In some chickens this maternal instinct is stronger than others and it can happen at any time. It is quite easy to spot because the broody hen will simply sit in the nesting box (or flower pot!) and refuse to budge. She may also make a peculiar growling noise if disturbed and become quite aggressive. However, unless your chicken has been near a cockerel within the last 7 days the eggs will not be fertilised and will never hatch into chicks. If you are not removing the eggs everyday there is more chance that a chicken will go broody.

What you should do
If you do nothing, your chicken will stay like this for up to 3 weeks (the incubation time for eggs). It is not necessarily a problem but it will prevent your other chicken from laying in the nesting box. You can remove her from the nest and block the nesting box so that she cannot get in. Be brave, open up the egg port and lift her off. After a couple of days she will lose the urge to sit on the eggs and you can open up the box again.

Customer Images


Amanda, 9 June 2016

I have just had an Australorp gone broody and comments above are useful. I opened the nestbox hatch and poured a small amount of water over her head to try and rehydrate and break the broodyness. it seemed to break the torpor that she had entered and she crossly moved onto a perch in the house. I then opened the back door of the house and she grudgingly went out. she is now eating her favourite corn with her mates outside and I am hoping that she will now stop.....

Cornerstone, 21 March 2015

We have a broody bantam, very aggressive, so we moved her to a separate box, but I love her being there. Her male partner died a few weeks ago, so I know her eggs won`t be fertile. I just bought 6 eggs from a local breeder and swapped her eggs for these others. One week to go!

Chloe, 21 September 2013

when my chook went broody we bought some fertilised eggs for her and they hatched within the 3-4 weeks!!

Linda, 10 September 2013

I had an ISA Brown go broody. I kept removing her from the nest box and also removed eggs. It was a very hot day 99 * and I found her dead in the nesting box. I tried to make sure she was drinking every time I found her sitting gaping. I think she just got dehydrated. Broke my heart.

Suzi, 30 July 2013

Hi I have a chicken suddenly gone broody at first I thought she was unwell but what with the growling and snappyness I had a hint she went broody, I wonder if it has to do with bringing out the new chicks we hatched and are now in their own coup next to the older hens as 2 of the chicks is hers and she reckonises them as she spent a lot of time looking. Now I know I will lift her off .

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