2 groups of chicks, multiple mums!


In the Brooder
Apr 24, 2020
Basically after advice, I had 2 lots of chicks hatch at the same time in the same place...to 5 different mums!

So I have a chicken pen with a shed inside, my chickens managed to hatch chicks in opposite corners of the shed. I didn’t think they’d hatch tbh but on Saturday morning a little chick was peeping out from under a hen. So one corner had 4 hens sitting together and they have all taken on motherly duties of 4 chicks. The other corner has a hen sitting by herself with 3 chicks (there were 4, one died overnight) I also think she may have taken one from the other 4 mum clutch of eggs.
So the 4 mum group has 2 orange mums that seem to be the main mothers and 2 white fluffy mums who are a bit moody with the chicks to be honest, both with their own chick group and the chicks from the other single mum. The 4 mum chicks are eating and drinking fine and moving around by themselves.
I’m worried because the single mum hasn’t started leaving the nest yet, I’m 80% sure her 3 chicks are eating and drinking now (the last one hatched on monday) but her chicks do get pecked if the white fluffy mums come near them, but they dive back under mum by themselves. Its a bit of a mess but I’ve just been leaving them to it as they are managing fine. I have supplied 2 lots of food and water in different places, one lot right beside the single mum so she and the chicks don’t need to venture far.
Should I separate the mum in the corner (I have an empty rabbit hutch) so she can move around without her chicks getting pecked and should I keep the white fluffy mums apart from the orange mums of the other group also, or just leave them to work it out for themselves? The white ones seem to be doing guard duties while the orange ones are keeping the chicks warm and taking them for food and drink. The chicks in the 4 mum group haven’t left the shed yet, the doorframe has a lip keeping them in but wont be long until they can jump out.
Tl;dr - should I separate 2 groups of mums and chicks that hatched at the same time?

The Happster

Apr 5, 2020
Cloud Nine
I would not have so many hens getting involved. I would just let one take over, or possibly two. If the hen with the three chicks hasn't eaten/drunk it could be because she has to protect the chicks.
If the chicks are being pecked by the white hens, I would definitely take those hens out.

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