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Move broody Silkie inside or not? And ? about feed.

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I have a Silkie sitting on 2 eggs, been about 10 days now. She is currently in the big coop with the rest of the flock. Should we move her to our smaller coop once hatched or even inside or just leave her where she is? I'm afraid if we move her with her babies in the smaller coop she won't be able to stay warm by herself, it will be end of Jan in Virginia when they hatch. We have a heating pad (rubber, low temp, made for chickens) that we could put in there if we need it.
Also, we plan on giving medicated feed to them. Is it OK to eat Mama hen's eggs if she's eating it, too? I want to keep my other hens from eating the starter feed, that's why we were thinking of keeping them in the smaller coop for the first few weeks. Thanks so much, any other advice is appreciated as well, first time hatching!
post #2 of 8

Since we are in the middle of winter I would bring her in your house.  Remember to take her outside once a day to go to the bathroom because broody poop is the worst.  Offer her some food and water too.  If she is in the house you will be able to hold the chicks more and keep an eye on them.  She can eat the medicated chick starter too it won't hurt her.  They are so much fun to watch.  I would get her a big plastic storage tub to raise the babies in.  

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
When would you recommend bringing her in, before she hatches? And then how long should we keep them all inside before letting them out with the big girls? Thanks so much!
post #4 of 8

I would bring her in around the 19th day.  Put her in a spot that doesn't have to much traffic.  Remember to take her outside once a day the poop is horrible.  Really depending on the weather you don't want to put the little ones out.  With only two eggs you could probably keep them inside for six weeks. You have to slowly introduce them to the flock.  Put them in a cage to where the bigger chickens can see them but not be able to get to them.  The mom will stay with them and take care of them until they are around six weeks old.  

post #5 of 8
I wouldn't recommend bringing her in at all. She is acclimated to your cold weather and bringing her inside to your warm house would be detrimental to her, in my opinion. If you bring her inside, do you plan on keeping her in until the weather warms back up? Are you prepared to have to reintroduce her and her babies back to a flock that has possibly forgotten about her and will view her as an intruder?

If she's not being picked on by her flock mates, I would leave her right where she is. She'll keep her chicks warm and protect them and integrate them in with her flock. If she's a low girl in the pecking order and does get picked on, I'd move her into a cage inside the coop, where she can be seen but not touched by the others. I have two hens brooding right now, and another that seems to be thinking about it (2 Silkies and a Sizzle). I've left them right where they started, and I will leave them there until they decide to leave their nests on their own.

Just my $0.02. Good luck.
Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all your advice. We decided to let her do her thing on her own and she hatched the first one today!
post #7 of 8
So cute, my broody is outside with her chicks, in a sectioned are of the coop. Mine hatched last week.
post #8 of 8
congratulations!!! so sweet!!
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