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  • Writer's pictureKate

Broody Busting

So there is a thing some chickens do. They think it is time to hatch their eggs, so they sit on the nest for weeks and weeks and weeks - it's called going broody. They don't lay their own eggs, but they steal the eggs the other hens lay. And it doesn't matter to them that they are not fertilized, by god, they are hatching some eggs!

There are lots of mean things you can do to "bust a broody", but I have found the best way to handle it is to just get them some fertile eggs, or a couple of newborn chicks.

So when Miss Keesha (the world's meanest hen) went broody AGAIN this year, I waited until my local chicken lady had a hatch, and I scurried over to her farm (The Nesting Box) to pick up two baby chicks, still wet from breaking out of the shell.

I slipped back to my own chicken coop, and when I reached under the Scarey Hen to steal the eggs, I replaced them with little peepers. Happily, chickens are not very bright, so after she was done trying to slice open my hand with her beak, she looked under her and said "oh look stupid human, my eggs HAVE hatched".

Two little black Australorps:

Note the blurred head as Keesha tries to kill me for photographing chick, despite my bringing her a cottage cheese breakfast in bed.

Man, I adore chicks (but I wish my loving Ethel was the broody and not The Black Hen of Death)

In the meantime, the hatchery chicks are pretty grown up and are now getting on the big girls' roost just like real hens.

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