Thursday, July 15, 2010
My chickens are three years old now. I originally had thirteen, but got rid of eight. About a year and a half later, two of my chickens were murdered by what I think was weasels. A couple months after that, my chickens started acting weird. Two of the hens stay in one little cubical side by side or on top of each other. I don't think that they are eating or drinking any water. Every time I go in to check on them, I try to move them, but they nip at me. I'm not sure what to do. Can you please help?
Ohh...those pesky weasels! I hope it didn't kill your favorites, the pests somehow know which ones are the owners favorites. Anyways...I have a question for you, are the girls sitting on eggs? There is a possibility that they have gotten broody, meaning they want to become a mama and are sitting on eggs. They tend to get very snippy and protective of their eggs when they are broody. Let me know, if that isn't it, we will investigate further!
I lifted them up today and there were no eggs. I tried to get them to move around a bit because they haven't been eating and they just went right back down to where they were before.
They can still get broody, even if they aren't sitting on eggs. It is her motherly instinct kicking in and they want to be mamas. Hens can get very mean (mama bear mean) when they are are broody which would explain why they nip at you when you try to move them. Broody hens tend to eat and drink vigorously, and race back to the nest. Is there a way for your to discourage them from sitting in the nest? Could you block off their nesting boxes in the late afternoon and all night? Forcing them to get out of their nesting boxes should help them snap out of it.
Readers, what do you think? Are her girls broody? Is there something else it could be? If you think they are broody, what do you suggest she do?