When a hen sits on her eggs hoping to hatch baby chicks, this is referred to as “going broody.”
Hens may experience increased body temperature and reduced appetite and thirst during this time.
Some breeds of chickens are more prone to this than others.
Wyandottes have a strong tendency toward going broody, but there are methods to combat this. They are a dual-purpose breed. As such, they’re productive layers, can provide lots of eggs to their keepers, and serve as reliable sitters.
There’s a lot to know about this chicken breed; if you want to know more, keep reading!
We’ll look at Wyandottes as egg layers and some of their broody tendencies.
What to Do When Wyandotte Chickens Go Broody
If you have broody chicken breeds, it’s essential to know how to handle them when they become broody.
When this happens, and you aren’t trying to hatch eggs, it can slow egg production.
It also reduces how much a hen eats food and drinks cool water.
But it also increases the chance of aggression, especially if you attempt to take their eggs.
Further Reading: Why is my Wyandotte chicken aggressive?
Chickens may even steal eggs from others in the flock in an effort for chicks when she’s brooding.
Left unchecked, you may see other birds in the flock become broody.
Luckily, there are a few things to do to help break a broody period.
Stay on Top of Egg Retrieval
To start, let’s talk about one way to potentially avoid broodiness.
While it isn’t surefire, it helps to remove your chickens’ eggs regularly.
It’s best not to just reach under your chickens and grab them. Instead, set your birds to the side, away from her nest completely, as you collect the eggs.
Removing Your Wyandottes
Once your chicken is already broody, it can help to remove them from its nest box.
A few days in chicken jail can help break their broodiness.
If the broodiness has spread throughout your flock, you may need to temporarily shut down the entire chicken coop.
In much the same way, this removes your chickens from their nests and helps break brooding.
Some backyard chicken keepers choose to remove nesting materials for the same effect.
Cool Beneath Your Wyandottes
Cooling the underside of your chicken’s body in her nest discourages brooding behavior.
After all, with their body cooler on the bottom, they’re less likely to feel comfortable in their nest to brood.
There are a few things to do to break brooding behavior.
Some backyard chicken owners use a wire bottom for nesting areas for this purpose.
An easier way to do this is to add a few ice cubes or a frozen water bottle beneath your Wyandottes in their nesting area.
This will cool them without restructuring the nests entirely.
Let Them Hatch an Egg
If you aren’t against the idea, there’s a way to let your hen work through her broodiness naturally.
All she wants is fertilized eggs and, in the end, a batch of chicks.
You don’t have to wait until your hen lays her own viable eggs, either.
If you don’t have a rooster, fostering fertilized eggs can also work for broody chickens.
Are Wyandotte Hens Good Mothers?
While Wyandottes aren’t always comfortable acting as lap chickens, they’re known as a rather docile breed.
How do these broody chicken breeds do when they have an actual chick, though?
Wyandottes make great mothers.
These birds have a reputation for being protective of their chicks.
If you are interested in expanding your flock by allowing some of your hens to hatch their eggs, Wyandottes are a great breed for raising chicks.
How Often Do Wyandotte Chickens Lay Eggs?
As mentioned, Wyandottes are productive egg layers.
As a dual-purpose chicken breed, these birds are kept both for their eggs and meat as well as kept as pets and show birds.
On average, these chickens will lay about four eggs each week.
However, this can vary depending on the chicken and how healthy they are.
This means it’s possible to reap up to 200 or more eggs a year for each of the Wyandottes you have!
As a cold hardy breed, Wyandottes aren’t as affected by cold winter conditions.
Unlike other breeds of chickens, a Wyandotte chicken will continue to lay eggs through the winter.
Further Reading: What age do Wyandotte chickens start to lay eggs?
What Color Eggs Do Wyandotte Chickens Lay?
Chickens lay an array of egg colors.
This means different birds offer different results.
For the most part, Wyandottes lay cream or brown eggs.
Yet, there are a few exciting patterns these birds are known for.
This includes Blue Laced Red, Silver Laced, and Golden Laced eggs.
This is a visual difference determined by a hen’s genetics, according to Michigan State University.
As a food product, different colors don’t affect the taste of the eggs.
How Many Years Do Wyandottes Lay For?
Wyandottes start laying eggs around 18 to 20 weeks old.
The exact timeline can vary depending on the birds in your flock.
Once they start laying, it’s reasonable to expect a few years of constant production.
After your chickens reach about three years old, this will start to taper off.
It’s common to see egg production decline before it stops completely, so you may still get some eggs from your chicken after her third birthday.
What Chicken Breeds Get Broody?
While common in Wyandottes, broody behavior isn’t specific to this chicken breed.
Some other breeds chicken owners need to know are prone to this behavior include:
- Buff Orpingtons
- Cuckoo Marans
- Dark Cornish
Don’t forget: any hen can go broody.
The behavior is more common in some bird breeds but no hens are completely immune.
So, whether you have Wyandottes or another breed, it’s a good idea to keep an eye out for potential brooding behavior.
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