Little Lilac’s been broody for the last few weeks, but after a spell in the barn without a nest, she’s back with the main group and thankfully not showing any interest in sitting on eggs.
It’s unusual for an ex-commercial hen to go broody but we’ve had 2 this year and whilst Ruby went on to raise 3 lovely chicks, we decided not to do the same with Lilac. She was displaying the usual signs of sitting on eggs and not moving all day; she’d stripped her underside of feathers to give the eggs the maximum heat from her body, but she behaved a little differently to Ruby, which was very sweet!
When we moved Lilac off the nest she’d growl at us and ruffle her feathers, and then she’d run away, moving her head from side to side, and have an immediate desire to dustbathe then have a good run around for a few minutes! She’d sometimes not go back to the nest straight away, so we’re not sure how committed she was, but she did spend most of her day sitting on eggs if she could.
However, Lilac’s overall health was compromised with her sitting on the eggs and despite moving her off them, she’d always return to them a little later, so we moved her into the barn, an egg-free environment! She stayed there for a few days, close to the other hens that were living there, but away from any eggs or nests.
This did the trick and she was soon able to re-join the main flock, happily walking past the nest box and ignoring any eggs that had been laid elsewhere – long may this continue!