Isn't it early for hens to get broody? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Our son noticed two days ago that one of the hens would not get off her nest when he went to gather eggs, so Dad went out to check the situation. She wouldn't get off the nest, but offered no resistance when Dad reached under her and got the eggs. She was still there yesterday, just sitting there, still alive and warm, kinda dozing (it was nearly dark, when the chores got done). Our hens are Golden Comets, and will be two this spring. Are they known to be broody, and are they good mothers? We got them from an Amish farmer, and there were a LOT of Golden Comets at the livestock auction (We got our rooster from there, when we got the hens), but I can't find anything about the breed in the poultry catalogs that we have. I would like chicks, but NOT in the dead of winter. We have been pleased with their egg laying! Big, yummy brown eggs.

-- Leann Banta (, February 06, 2000


Leann, it is possible for a hen to go broody any time of the year. It isn't usual, but it happens. I'm not familiar with Golden Comets, but even in breeds that aren't supposed to be broody there are always individuals who go broody at every chance.

Generally a hen who takes the trouble to hatch a clutch of eggs will take the trouble to raise the chicks.

But there is always the possibility that she is injured or ill so keep an eye on her. Some hens really appreciate it if you hold a handful of grain or a little bowl of water in front of them while they're on the nest.

I get the impression that you are prepared for that shock anyone who's raised chickens has had-a broody hen who's actually dead.

Are all these Golden Comets are so mellow that you can reach under them without getting pecked? If so my husband wants a bunch. Gerbil

-- Gerbil (, February 06, 2000.

I sent the one of my sons out this morning with a big bowl of scraps for the hens, and to check the "broody" one out. She had died during the night, of no particular reason that was evident, anyway. They live is a cement floored house, and get laying mash, water, and scraps (bread, veggies, and fruit), and gritty sand. We have had them since this fall, and amongst the 24, we have only lost two to date, so I don't think we have done too badly. There has been several COLD spells in the past month, so maybe it was a bit too much. They seem pretty docile; even the rooster is polite. There are little red spots in the eggs that mean he's doing his job; I am thinking about sending some to a teacher who fires up an incubator for her class every spring. We have been really pleased with them.

-- Leann Banta (, February 06, 2000.

Leann, sorry to hear about your hen. It happens, but it isn't fun. Something got into our hen house last night, so I'm suddenly down to 3 roosters and a hen. Hadn't planned on raising any chicks this spring, guess that's changed.

If you've got the stomach for it, you can always cut open the hen and see what there is to see. It is possible she was egg bound. Tough thing to treat even if you catch it in time. There are many things that could have killed her, some of which you can see for yourself and others you can't.

Sorry it happened. Gerbil

-- Gerbil (, February 06, 2000.

Last year we had a Golden Comet voluntarily go broody on us, and she was a great mom. She let us add eggs and do a minimum of handling of eggs. I'll take a broody hen any day over an incubator! Hope your others remain healthy and you get a chance to experience a broody hen.

-- glynnis (, February 06, 2000.

Hi, folks. Thanks for the ideas; and you might be right, Gerbil. Some of these old ladies lay some HUGE eggs, some occassionally with a smear of blood on them. We are going to let them hatch eggs if they want; Hubby is a big fried chicken fan.

-- Leann Banta (, February 07, 2000.

Sorry to here you lost your hen .I would take the natural death over wyhatever little creature is getting into my hen house .Hope the trap works tonight other wise the cat will get locked in the henhouse tomorrow.Its o.k.the cat is afraid of the chickens but not weasels mice ect.

-- Patty Gamble (, February 07, 2000.

Hello, In answer to your question "Are Golden Comets Known for being broody and are they good mothers"? I have about 50 chickens right now and have several golden commets. Last year I had one of my commet hens "Squeakers" go broody. Not only was she a good mother of her 12 chickes she hatched but when another hen got killed Squeakers took the other hens 10 chicks, which were two weeks younger than hers, and raised them just as if they were her own. Any breed of chicken can go broody even one of my Leghorns has hatched chicks. It just depends on the chicken. Golden commets are supposed to be "egg laying machines". If one of them is trying to be a mother when you need the eggs, try putting her in a cage away form her nest for a few days to a week and feed her good. This has worked for us when we have a hen go broody, and we dont need the chicks. Well I hope I have been some help. If any one would like to write me I would love some pen pals. I am 16 and I raise cows beef, dairy, and veal for fair, chickens, ducks, rabbits, horses and i have a milk goat.

-- SharRon Hallman (, February 07, 2000.

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