I came home from a work trip to one VERY broody hen.
Marigold is 9 months old. For the last 3-4 months, she has walked around making the chuck, chuck, chuck, broody mama sound. She'll even puff up and go all turkey mom on any of the other hens if they get close. But she never quite tipped over into being fully broody. She continued to lay eggs and roost at night. So I just let her be.
But last week I felt she was acting a little more broody than she had been. And I was right. When I got home last night, she was nestled into a nest box as happy as could be. I scooped her out, gave her a big hug and put her up on the roost. Ten minutes later, she was back in the nest. I thought, it wasn't quite dark and now that it's dark, I'll try again. Nope, off the roost and back into the nest.
So this morning, I moved her to my dog crate/broody breaker in the garage. It breaks my heart to isolate her like that. But I'm not in a position to let her brood, so breaking her is probably the most humane thing to do.
I suppose I should get used to this as I've got 3 more young Buff Orpingtons and 2 Cochins and all are prone to going broody. So as we head into spring, this is not the last time I'm going to have to deal w/ this.
I know people say you should tip the dog crate onto its side but I've always had good luck doing it this way. They like to stand on the big block and it kind of blocks them from nestling down into the towels. Hopefully, she's over being broody in a day or two and I can get her back out with her sisters.