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Tim Frazier

Second try at laying eggs?

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Tim Frazier

So I'm concerned that our small flock of hens have lost their nest as two weeks ago my daughters fiance and a friend were hunting the last day and heard a horrendous ruckus of hens which I now wonder if it was caused by the nest being raided.  I wouldn't think these hens would be so causual and behaving this way if they had poults or eggs?  What do the turkey experts think?

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Brad Eden

I'm no wildlife biologist but a huge ruckus made by a bunch of hens doesn't sound like nests being raided. Hens tend to disperse and make nests and lays eggs good distances from each other. (At least that's what I have found to be true.) So more than likely a bunch of biddies were talking smack about the big Tom tending them, and a fox or something broke up the gab sesssion.

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Tim Frazier

That’s my experience as well that the nests are not that close.  I’m just not sure the gobbler and hens acting like it’s the first week of May is a good sign when at the least there should be eggs on the ground. I hope this means nothing.   We did see the hens run a Black vulture off the field this morning.  They are not native here and have only been present for 5 or so years.  

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Treerooster

Hens with poults don't like to hang around toms, jakes, or hens without poults, at least until the poults are quite big. Hens with poults will hang with other hens that have poults to form brood flocks. I have seen as many as 4 hens with all their poults together. There were about 30 poults total. That was in the first week of September. 

 

Some jennys just don't brood their first year and it could be some hens that lost their nest or poults with that tom. Some of those hens may still renest if they lost their nest/eggs. Hens that lose their brood will not renest as they have already hatched a clutch of eggs and their hormones change when that happens. 

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mister grouse

Friend was mowing yesterday and saw a hen leave a grass patch in mowers path.  Friend checks area and sees 8 eggs in nest.  Classic re-nest clutch of smaller group of 6-8 eggs, as first nests usually have 12-16 eggs if undisturbed. Way too late in the summer  for this to be a first nest in our area. Friend   left the grass patch standing. Hen back on the nest that afternoon he said.

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