How To Tell If A Duck Is Broody Or Will Sit On Her Eggs

Hi, can you help me,I have a drake and a female indian runner duck.The female is laying one egg everyday, which we collect.How do I know if she is broody or wants to hatch them ? or will she lay a clutch of eggs? I would love to breed them but am unsure how to get started.

Hi Sam,
Thanks for visiting the farmingfriends website and leaving a comment. What a great
question. A broody hen or duck will sit on her eggs. Your duck won’t go broody if the eggs are being taken away. If you want to get your duck to sit then you could try leaving the eggs in the nest or if you don’t wish to do this then get some pot eggs and leave them in the nest until she won’t leave the nest. Once she has gone broody, it is important to make sure that the nest is comfortable and food and water are within easy reach. When a duck does sit it is important to make sure that the duck leaves the nest everyday to stretch her legs, and eat/drink and possible have a quick swim. When she returns to the nest her damp body from her swim will help to keep the humidity levels correct. If you take your eggs away and use pot eggs to get her to sit then it is important to make sure that you store the eggs correctly.
Don’t store your eggs for more than 7 days before placing them under your broody hen and make sure that you turn them 4/5 times a day.

I hope this information is useful and that you get your duck to go broody or find a
broody hen to sit on the eggs as eggs hatch more successfully under a broody hen or duck.

Let me know how you get on and best of luck. Kind regards.
Sara @ farmingfriends

If anyone has experience of ducks going broody and sitting on their eggs then please leave a comment.

11 thoughts on “How To Tell If A Duck Is Broody Or Will Sit On Her Eggs”

  1. i have a duck that was sat on her eggs for about 4 days and now shes not sitting on them could there be a reason why

  2. I have 2 one year old Rouen hens that started laying in February(which seemed pretty early for Northern Wisconsin!). We removed the eggs every day as mist were frozen by the time we found them. In April we started saving them to incubate. Once we had as many as we chose to incubate we left them to the hens. They laid them in nice nests and usually covered them before going out for the day but didn’t appear to have any interest in sitting! After checking and seeing that they each had 18 eggs in their nests we removed 10 out of each and put them in the incubator. One of the gens started sitting the next day! Maybe 18 seemed overwhelming?! The other hen continued to wander around totally uninterested but finally started to sit about a week later. The first hen’s eggs started to hatch at the same time as the incubator eggs so I just brought her tge ducklings as they hatched and she was fine with tucking them under with the rest of her ducklings! I hope I haven’t overtasked her though since she now has about 15 ducklings. I’m sure that quite a few didn’t hatch because they were getting quite old. I did observe both hens remove rotten eggs from their nests. They would either roll them out or if they had cracked, pick them up and run off with them and drop them as far away as possible. Wow do they smell bad!!

  3. hi
    i have 3 ducks and a drake,one is a mother and there is the 3 babies which have now grown up,the mother is a khaki campbell duck which i want to hatch eggs out again the babies are call duks and the drake is a silver appleyard. could you please tell me what is the commonist month my ducks will go broody?

  4. Hi Ben,
    Thanks for your question. Ducks usually go broody and sit on their eggs in the Spring. It can depend on the breed of the duck as to how easily they will go broody. For example. White campbells seem to get more broody than khaki campbells.
    Do you have ducks yourself?
    Just to let you know that I have a duck forum which is very popular, where people come to chat and ask questions about ducks.

    Kind regards
    sara @ farmingfriends

  5. Ok, on sunday i went out to my ducks and their were seven eggs in a neat nest, they wernt there the day before and i only have 2 females, then this morning same thing so now i have 14 eggs in a nest, i think its only 1 laying them though if i leave them will they sit on them and if possible when? any answers appreasiated

  6. Hi

    I was away for a week and my neighbour was feeding my hens and ducks. When I got home there was there were 4 duck eggs in the nest I had them took out and cleaned and put in the fridge before I had talked to my neighbour. He said the duck would cover them when she got off the nest.Anyway my question is will she start over again now that I interfered?

  7. Hi Sky,
    Thanks for visiting farmingfriends and leaving your comment. What a wonderful thing you have done for the ducks.

    You can get them used to you by feeding them treats so that they will come to you more readily as they associate you with food. You can also try spending time with them when they have settled down in their hut as the dim light may allow them to be less scared. I know this does work for some but my ducks tend to run off if I enter the hut at night. I imagine though that I should spend more time in the hut when it is dim just sitting with them and then they may get used to me so you could try this.

    Adding pot eggs into their hut may help and also I was told to fill an empty egg shell with mustard and then they will stop pecking at the egg as they don’t like the taste of the mustard. Here is a link to a post with more ideas for tips to help prevent egg eating.
    Hope you get sirted with your ducks.Let me know how you get on.
    Kind regards
    Sara @ farmingfriends

  8. I have recently purchased 50 cherry valley ducks from a terrible place. the conditions in which they were being kept was horrible. I have two questions, my first is how can i get them used to me? they seem terrified everytime you approach them and run away panicked. one has even hurt its foot doing this. My other question is how can i stop them eating there eggs? I noticed that once they lay an egg they will all just start to attack the egg until they have eaten all of it. this is a very annoying habit they have and id like to be able to stop it if possible

  9. Hi Daisy,
    Thanks for visiting farmingfriends and leaving your comment.Advice for discouraging broodiness in hens is as follow:

    * If you do not want to let a hen sit on a nest, then it is a good idea to remove the hen from the nest as soon as possible (night time is a good time to do this).
    * Sometimes it is necessary to put a broody hen in a broody coop.
    * A broody coop is a small cage or box which has a wire or slatted bottom to discourage the hen from sitting in the coop as there is no material for nesting.
    * A broody coop can be suspended from the ceiling of the poultry hut so that the hen is not removed from the other hens completely.
    * Food and water must be provided in the coop.
    * After a few days the broody hen can be returned to the rest of the flock.

    I don’t have experience of broody ducks myself but would have thought that this advice would still apply to them. I will add your comment to my farmingfriends duck forum and see if we get any advice from those who’ve been keeping ducks longer than me!

    Let me know how you get on. Kind regards
    Sara @ farmingfriends

  10. I need to stop my ducks going broody. Eggs are removed in the mornings. i have 3 that are sitting. How can I bring them back in to lay as soon as possible?

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