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4 week old chicks n their mum

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by GroningerGeens, Jul 9, 2016.

  1. GroningerGeens

    GroningerGeens Just Hatched

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    May 22, 2016
    Southampton England
    Hello.

    I have some lovely chicks who will be 4 weeks old on Monday.
    They have a good amount of feathers now and are still with mum.
    She seems to be loosing interest now.
    Is this too soon or are they old enough to be independent?
    I will check this evening to see if she is keeping them warm still.
    Also mum laid an egg yesterday!

    Also should I be vaccinating them at all?
    I have 15 chickens in total now, 6 chicks and 9 layers.

    At what point can the mum and chicks return to the flock? They are only separate by a wire fence so have been visible to one another.
    Thanks Geoff
     
  2. farmgirllvo

    farmgirllvo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 27, 2016
    Id say return them to the flock now because mom is starting to move away from them, they are old enough to be warm without her, were do you live and how cold dose it get at night?
    Watch the young ones and if they start to get really pecked on when they are with the other birds separate them till they are older and stronger. :)
     
  3. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 15, 2011
    SE Pa.
    They can be independent now, again if it isn't too cold at night. I have a pair of Rhode Island Reds that were mostly weaned from their adoptive mother at five weeks. That was in May here when the temperatures at night were mostly in the forties. High summer in England, I would guess they will do fine being mostly feathered now. Vaccinating would be better answered by someone who is more familiar with what you have in your area to worry about.
     
  4. RobertPlamondon

    RobertPlamondon Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 14, 2016
    Oregon
    Geoff,

    A mother hen stops acting maternal once her hormones fall below a certain level, and this timing may or may not be optimal. But since it's summer, now's probably as good a time as any. I have trouble believing that the chicks still need supplemental heat.

    Returning the mother hen to the flock now should be fine. The chicks may be a bit small for the hurly-burly of flock life -- I don't know. You can put them in with the rest of the flock on a trial basis and watch to see what happens.

    Vaccinations? In my area (Oregon), no vaccinations are recommended, so I don't use them. It may be different in your area.

    Robert
     
  5. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    Dec 25, 2012
    Any hen who lays has lost all interest in her chicks. She may even prove to be a slight danger to he grown children because she will begin to put the chicks in their place, that place being at the bottom of the pecking order. It would be better to have already intergraded the chicks into the flock because while they are still with their mother she protects them, now they are on their own.
     
  6. GroningerGeens

    GroningerGeens Just Hatched

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    May 22, 2016
    Southampton England
    Hello ,

    Thank you all for your advice.
    Yes she has lad for three days now so I have decided to let the friendliest hen in with the and the mum to show it goes.

    It seems she is happy with the new hen andbthevchicks have been hopping on to branches and seem independent.

    I'm going to watch carefully.

    The chicks were all still huddled with mum last night so I'll che k how the behavior is between them all as the evening comes.

    GG
     

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