Do Chickens Eat When They Are Sitting On Eggs?

Chicken keepers and veterinarians have a vested interest in studying a wide range of facets of hens’ personalities and routines. It’s a common misconception that hens stop eating when they start sitting on their eggs, but in reality, laying hens continue to consume food throughout the entire process. You’ll be able to provide greater care for your chickens and make sure they’re healthy and content if you have a firm grasp on this habit.

Chickens have an innate need to lay eggs and, when they do, they frequently incubate their clutch while sitting on the nest. Since hens have a natural tendency to guard their eggs, they will often use their own thermal energy to keep the eggs toasty and safe. Chickens have to eat even when they’re sitting on eggs, so they don’t get weak or sick. 

Do Hens Like Sitting On Eggs And Eating?

Chickens do, in fact, eat while laying eggs. They will still need access to food and water when incubating their eggs, but it’s vital to keep in mind that they won’t be venturing far from the nest for meals. 

Knowing what chickens eat and giving them the right supplies is essential if you plan on growing your own. Chickens are omnivores, meaning they consume both plant and animal matter, thus it is important to provide them with a varied diet. Chickens typically eat a variety of plant-based foods, insect-based diets, and even tiny animals like mice and worms.

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Tips to ensure the chickens stay healthy while they are sitting on the eggs –

If you want your chickens to stay healthy when they’re sitting on eggs, follow these guidelines: 

  • Place feeders & waterers near the nest:

If you want your chickens to stay in the coop and incubate their eggs, it’s important to provide them with easy access to food and water without forcing them to travel far. 

  • Offer a balanced diet:

As chickens are omnivores, their diet should include a wide range of foods. This includes grains, fruits, vegetables, and even insects. 

  • Provide clean water at all times:

You should always make sure your chickens have access to clean water; it helps them digest their food and keeps them at a comfortable temperature. 

  • Avoid high-fat foods:

Meat and dairy items, both high-fat sources, should be avoided while chickens are incubating eggs since they increase the likelihood of disease. 

  • Consider providing soft food:

Chickens sitting on eggs may have difficulties digesting hard food, so try feeding them mashed fruits and vegetables or other soft, easily digested foods. 

  • Place food in easy-to-reach areas:

Chickens may have trouble reaching food that is too high or too low, so it’s important to keep chicken food at a level that’s comfortable for them to eat. 

  • Offer a variety of food options:

If you feed your chickens the same thing every day, they may get weary of eating and stop putting in the effort to eat. 

If you follow these guidelines, you can give your chickens a better chance of hatching healthy eggs. If your chickens are healthy and content, they will lay healthy eggs, and your flock will prosper.

How Crucial is it to Feed your Chickens a Balanced Diet? 

In addition to a balanced feed, it is essential to always keep fresh water available for your hens. Chickens won’t feed without access to water since it’s necessary for proper digestion and maintaining a consistent body temperature. Keep chickens hydrated by providing them with a clean, easily accessible water dish at all times when housing them indoors.

To ensure your chickens have the proper nutrition and resources when they are sitting on eggs, there are a few things you can do. So that your chickens don’t have far to forage for food, you can put a feeder next to the coop, for instance. To ensure the birds always have access to water, put a waterer in close proximity to the nest. 

Additionally, while your chickens are sitting on eggs, you need to be careful about the kind of food you give them. To reduce the likelihood of salmonella and other infections, it’s better not to feed your chickens high-fat diets like meat or dairy items. Instead, make sure your chickens have access to a varied diet of healthy grains and veggies. 


Sitting hens will feed while tending to their eggs, though they may not venture far from the nest. Keep in mind the type of food you are feeding your chickens when they are incubating their eggs, and provide them a balanced diet and access to clean water at all times. You can keep your chickens healthy and content by giving them the attention and food they require.

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