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Hen still with chicks.

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I was thinking that a chick will usually start doing its own thing from 6-8 weeks. I have a 1 year old silkie cross that has two 8 week old chicks and is still clinging to them like the day they hatched!

One chick I think is a Roo (just because of the way it acts and it's also twice as big as the other). The smaller chick (maybe a hen) was born with one wing. The hen held her up to eat and drink, my Roos also helped her get food too. She is very much thriving despite her handicap!

At night mother hen and chicks still roost together apart from the flock in a medium dog box. Mother hen also will go on the defense if any other hens get too close to her chicks. Even the Roo that made these chicks is overly protective of them! He won't let them out of his sight and also chases and is aggressive with hens that pick at mama hen or chicks! When can I anticipate parents letting their babies go off on their own? How long until mama hen starts laying again?

My husband believes that this is going on longer than normal because of my chick with the one wing? This may have been the hens first set of chicks. She was fantastic while she was sitting and let me bring her food and water. She even was great while I cleaned her box before the hatch and made no fuss about letting me clean her up after she made her own mess. I just think she loves playing mama hen, but I'm getting anxious to have her start laying again. Suggestions?


Edited by ramsburgchicken - 2/27/16 at 11:15pm
post #2 of 9


All in her own time - there's nothing you can do that would not cause distress to both mother and chicks I'm afraid. Let nature take its course would be my advice. She will still be a mother to the chicks even when she resumes laying for a week or two (in my experience). 

 

CT

Nairobi, Kenya
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Nairobi, Kenya
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post #3 of 9

I raised a late batch of three chicks last summer and when they reached six weeks old, one of my older hens took over raising them. She even went partially broody just for the occasion. It really amazed me.

 

But what was the most amazing part was she continued to hover over them, feeding them and teaching them until they were almost four months old, and then she lost interest in the role.

 

So let your broody do her job as she sees fit, and enjoy watching the little family.

post #4 of 9
One of my Silkies has been mothering a chick SINCE last summer. Shes somewhere around 6 months old now. She still sleeps under mommas wing at night and even accompanies her to the nest box when she lays. They go everywhere together! Ellie (momma) still calls her over and feeds her the treats she finds. Its pretty cute love.gif
Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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post #5 of 9

Is there such a thing in chicken world as "failure to launch"?

post #6 of 9
gig.gif
Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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Nikki
*C'mon, get flappy!*
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post #7 of 9

Silkies can be really devoted mothers. My little white silkie had three bantam cochin chicks, and continued trying to brood them at night all the way up until they started laying themselves! It was hilarious watching her attempt to spread her wings to cover three pullets who were full feathered and larger than she was! :lol:

Our flock: 2 African Geese, 16 Bantam Cochins, 12 Silkies, 11 Mixed Breed Bantams, 6 Japanese Bantams, 6 D'Uccles, 1 OEGB, 1 white crested black polish, and 1 very confused pigeon.
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Our flock: 2 African Geese, 16 Bantam Cochins, 12 Silkies, 11 Mixed Breed Bantams, 6 Japanese Bantams, 6 D'Uccles, 1 OEGB, 1 white crested black polish, and 1 very confused pigeon.
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post #8 of 9
I find this all completely adorable.
post #9 of 9

This thread made me smile! :love

You have a drumstick and your brain stops tickin'!
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You have a drumstick and your brain stops tickin'!
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