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Minimum days of brooding hen to introduce chicks?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hey guys, I tried to look this up in archives and was reading conflicting info. I'll lay out the scenario and am looking for input from those practiced at giving day old chicks to broody hens.

 

I had three girls go broody this past very warm Monday. Moved them from nests when discovered that night. Checked Tuesday and was pretty sure two were taking to brooding which I don't really want. I take eggs from them several times a day and not with kit gloves yet they are sticking to it. Today see brood poop so it's definite. I've got some eggs due to hatch this coming weekend. Is there a minimum time of brooding they should go before trying to trick them into rearing chicks? This would be less than a week. As stated I've been taking all eggs. What's conflicting in archives is some say you need to let them sit on eggs/golf balls or very small rock prior to replacing them with the chicks. Some say it doesn't matter.

 

Maybe we can get a up to date general consensus. If this weekend won't work I'll start busting them of brood tomorrow. Two questions:

 

 

 

Is there a minimum number of days of brooding before attempting to introduce chicks?

 

Should they be on eggs/fake eggs prior to switch for better success?

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

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Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

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post #2 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thought about his a bit and realize it's probably best to just give each a few eggs tomorrow that are hatching Saturday. But the thing is I want to be able to select the chicks that they rear. Might be asking too much of the chicken gods but planned to do an initial selection for keepers and cull sale. Now I've broodies and have all these choices of what to do and little time. If it's not adding too much of a risk of rejection of chicks that would be ideal for me. Opinion on that?

 

Random eggs under them to finish hatching?

 

or 

 

Put the chicks I choose under them at night after hatch?

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

I'm in luck. Sold a broody and dozen hatching eggs. Put an add on Craigslist yesterday and have a buyer this morning dropping of a cat crate. Thought there was I'll move her to the crate with eggs and wait a few days to ensure she takes to it- doesn't walk off nest. They'll come by in few days evening to pick her up and set in their run. 

 

Still have the other and without input am leaning toward putting half a dozen eggs under her that are due to hatch this weekend. Just don't know if that's too soon. Is there anything to length of brood and chick rearing or they're as happy to have chicks early in brood as we would be?

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply
post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 

I'm drowning in broody birds.

 

Had tried putting one of the broody in pet carrier with eggs out in covered area of run. She went the night and sat after I opened the door but after daily stretch went back to the coop nest. New plan was to put those eggs back under her and wait until we got back from camp to move to pet carrier and into coop next to row of nesting boxes. Well, got home and saw 4 brids, one right in spot I wanted to put the pet carrier. Checked that night and sure enough, four broody girls. New plan. Set up the grow out coop and pen and move them all there with one in pet carrier to take back my layer nests. And that's what I did this late morning. All looks good, one walked off but went back to new nest after short stretch and any eggs that were peaking out or uncovered from initial move are arranged and covered by the girls. 

 

The good news is I've taken back my layer coop nests and now can collect eggs. Also have another person bringing over pet carrier for other bird that's been sitting a week. Whew. Pretty sure those moves will pan out well but will be interesting to hear follow ups from them.

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

 

-Charles Dudley Warner

Reply
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