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Hens Hatching Their Own Chicks

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I have 4 broody hens, each in their own box, in a building just for them and their babies. One of the hen's chicks have hatched, and the other three are still sitting on eggs (though one left her eggs to be a co-mama with another hen...). 

 

One of the hens whose eggs has not hatched yet puffs up if the chicks come near her. She came off her eggs for water and when the chicks walked by, she froze and puffed way up. I've seen this several times over the past two days.

 

My questions is, is she showing signs that she will turn on her chicks when they hatch? Or does she just not like them because she knows they're not hers? I'm just wondering if I should take her out before her chicks hatch, and give the eggs to one of the other mamas.

 

Thank you so much!


Edited by KerenR - 4/20/16 at 6:07pm
post #2 of 5

Not an expert but I'm thinking she knows that chick isn't hers, I'd leave her.  Hopefully someone with experience with peep in soon.

post #3 of 5

I'd say she's puffing up to warn everyone to stay away from her nest.  My broody hens do that - and will do that to anything that comes around - including another hen's chicks.  I wouldn't worry about her turning on her chicks over that.  Just make sure all the hens have plenty of room to stay out of each other's way.  They may go after other chicks that get to close to their own.  Good luck!

Married to the Perfect Guy with 3 kids.  We have a small flock of Black Copper Marans, Lavender & Blue Ameraucanas, and various layers.  We also raise free range meat chickens & turkeys!  What do you think? http://www.180movie.com/

 

Check out our YouTube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZYbRmx4TSpBdrmyqo75B_g

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Married to the Perfect Guy with 3 kids.  We have a small flock of Black Copper Marans, Lavender & Blue Ameraucanas, and various layers.  We also raise free range meat chickens & turkeys!  What do you think? http://www.180movie.com/

 

Check out our YouTube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZYbRmx4TSpBdrmyqo75B_g

Reply
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
We have 4 hens in an 8x8 brooder. Is that enough room? 2 hens are mothering the same 7 chicks. So that leaves 2 hens' chicks besides the 7 already hatched.
post #5 of 5

I think that's too small, but I've never tried that.  If you have an outside area as well it is probably fine.  Mine have our large fenced in yard to keep to themselves, and the hens and chicks wander pretty far and wide.  I'd keep a close watch on the hens once the other two hatch. There is a great broody hen thread on here http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/496101/broody-hen-thread/10090#post_16143613

 

You can ask there.  I've gotten great help and advice there!


Edited by SIMZ - 4/21/16 at 6:21pm

Married to the Perfect Guy with 3 kids.  We have a small flock of Black Copper Marans, Lavender & Blue Ameraucanas, and various layers.  We also raise free range meat chickens & turkeys!  What do you think? http://www.180movie.com/

 

Check out our YouTube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZYbRmx4TSpBdrmyqo75B_g

Reply

Married to the Perfect Guy with 3 kids.  We have a small flock of Black Copper Marans, Lavender & Blue Ameraucanas, and various layers.  We also raise free range meat chickens & turkeys!  What do you think? http://www.180movie.com/

 

Check out our YouTube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZYbRmx4TSpBdrmyqo75B_g

Reply
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