Instructables
Picture of Hatching Chicken Eggs Naturally
i'll show you how to improve the success of a natural chicken brood,
there's much you can do, to support your mother hen and to make sure that your chicks hatch safely and grow up to strong hens and roosters!

Of course there are many ways for hatching chicks, and this is only a guide to Improve your hatching result and help the chicks grow up, healthy and strong!

good luck!

 
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Step 1: What breeds are born mothers?

not all breed are good for hatching,
most breeds have lost the instinct and will not sit on eggs.
The hen you will follow in this instructable, is a wild mix between different breeds but did her job very good :)

good breeds are:

Brahma  - brilliant mothers and a big plus is there size, place for up to 20 eggs!
Silkie - also brilliant mothers but not that much space - good for small coops

of course there are others, but i really recommend this breeds.

Step 2: Place fake-eggs in a nest and wait

Picture of place fake-eggs in a nest and wait
RIMG1680.JPG
Place about 5 fake eggs ( for example pottery or rubber eggs) in a normal nest in you chicken coop.

Now:
WAIT! until one of your precious hens decides to be a mommy :)

you can be sure, that you have a broody hen when she:
- ruffles her feathers
- makes noises that remind of water in a bottle ( "glug glug")
- leaves the nest only for a few minutes a day and returns to the eggs very fast
- gets angry when you come near her ( she picks)


gabe yoo1 year ago
my chicken is making sounds like somebody slurping from a straw. Is that a sign of broody? :D
Mimikry (author)  gabe yoo1 year ago
Oh yes :)
Wait 20 days and some chicks are all over the coop ;)
gabe yoo1 year ago
?
gabe yoo1 year ago
Is a pollito a good chicken breed
sseddon1 year ago
What a fantastic post! Just started chicken keeping as a hobby - now have 6 silkies, 2 polish and 4 orpingtons plus have a broody mummy hen sitting on 5 eggs.....it's day 21 today "chick cam" is on 24/7 and its so exciting. Your food recipe for chicks is something I am going to try, will pick and start to dry nettles today.
AriedeB2 years ago
This is a great instructable!
zappa1232 years ago
My black hen has been sitting on donated fertilised eggs for 21 days today. She is outside under a bush and it has been raining constantly for 2 days now. I feel so sorry for her as its quite cold to for the time of year. Should I put her and the eggs into the coop or bring them into the house or just wait and see what happens. I am literally having nightmares! Should I just let nature take its course, will the eggs hatch under her, or should I intervene? I only got the 2 chickens last Aug and she only started laying in April. Please help,
Mimikry (author)  zappa1232 years ago
Hej zappa,

don't do anything right now, if it's the 21th day by now, you should not interrupt her at all. The chicks should hatch any minute now.
only thing you could do, is to protect her from rain.

also a good thing to do, is to build a provisional fence or something around her, without disturbing her to much.
2 reasons: 1 to protect the chicks from magpies
and 2, it's easier to catch her and the chicks, to get them in the coop, once they hatched ( wait until the hen raises and leaves the nest).

there is one more solution - don't do anything and let the hen do the job and hope for blind magpies... but i think you'll loose some chicks that way.

Good luck to you and your becoming mother :)
Ramgad2 years ago
Excellent instructable! Thanks
22tpring2 years ago
THANK YOU so much for a fine instructable. I've read many an article in Countryside and Mother Earth News but yours really made it real. Getting ready to feather my own nest and want organic eggs for myself and the young ones - excellent!
Mimikry (author)  22tpring2 years ago
Thanks for your appreciation :)

The only downside of hatching chicken are the roosters you have to...
---- you know :(
it looked like someone was about to have chicken for dinner didnt it
Mimikry (author)  softballch1k993 years ago
That part comes WAAAAAAY later :D
Caulerpa3 years ago
This instructable was wonderful! I've got a dream to someday raise chickens. I like how you explained why you should take every measure you do.
Mimikry (author)  Caulerpa3 years ago
chicken are fun - go for it!
Uptonb3 years ago
Good luck on the Pets Challenge.
Mimikry (author)  Uptonb3 years ago
thank you!
i enjoyed your cat-tree house i'ble!
i've built almost the same 5 years ago - much sturdier and prettier than the stuff you can buy in stores!

keep up the good work!
bajablue3 years ago
Congrats on making the finals! Fingers crossed for you!!!
Thank you!
Mimikry (author)  pedofieltje_1113 years ago
your nickname is a strange choice, don't you think???
ZyZZyvette3 years ago
Aha, not being a farmer I was a little concerned when I saw the photo for this step... ;)
bajablue3 years ago
This is a GREAT instructable! 5 Stars and my vote!!!
Mimikry (author)  bajablue3 years ago
Thank you very much :)
jany3 years ago
I have always had great results with the silkies. They are natural born mamas.
Mirime jany3 years ago
Also some of the banties are great moms we had on hen that was about 2-3 pounds that had, in one brood 23 chicks out of 28 eggs. How she covered them all we don't know but sh,e did it all by her self. Also Black Spanish Turkeys are very good broodies, Moms pet one always sets in mid May and won't leave untill mid aug. She steals the bad eggs but she trys, gotta give her points for the effort.
Mimikry (author)  jany3 years ago
yeah no breed beats silkies or brahmas in all that mommy-stuff :D

but the one shown in the instructable really surprised me - never thought that she would get broody at all.

shes a wild mix between different breeds, maybe there's a silkie in it somehow - she got real nice feathers.

the chicks from this Instructable are now almost 4 weeks and all healthy :)
it's a breed called "Iceland-chicken", the next im going to hatch are "Faverolles" (very handsome and bearded) and "easter egger" (the ones with green eggs :D )
Mirime3 years ago
The second pic is a very common one at our farm in the spring and summer. that evil glare.....(shudders)
Really nice work. I've ben keeping a few backyard hens for the past 4 years. We started with some hybrids, which unfortunately got eaten by a fox.
We now have 2 Buff Opingtons, a Welsummer and a Blue Belle. I think the Opingtons will make good brooders as they're lovely large birds and well feathered.
I have build an incubator, but might give the natural approach a try too when I have the opportunity.
Thanks for the clear advice on how to do this.
Mimikry (author) 3 years ago
thank you all :)

i Updated day 21 in the instructable - i forgot something very important

right now i have the next broody hen this year - a brahma :)
in about 3 weeks hopefully loads of fluffy chicks :D
sunshiine3 years ago
What a great ible! Thanks for sharing your hard work! Chickens can be such a fun experience!
ChrysN3 years ago
They are so cute! Great instructable.