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A few questions regarding our surprise hatchlings! *Pics added*

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by HopperVal, Sep 8, 2011.

  1. HopperVal

    HopperVal Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 8, 2011
    New Hampshire
    *Pics on page 2*


    So we've been trying for years to get our laying hens to give us some chicks with absolutely no luck. But wouldn't you know it, this morning my mom went out to collect eggs and there was a little black chick [​IMG]

    Since we were not expecting any chicks, ever, we are under prepared and I have a few questions.

    We had to remove the chick from our coop because the other hens were picking on it. We do not have a heating lamp so we grabbed momma in from outside and she is keeping her baby warm along with 6 other eggs.

    So now that you know the story here are my questions:

    - Can the chick eat ground layer pellets? I know it's not ideal, but will it suffice?

    - Does Momma need anything special? She's got food and water but she's likely a bit nervous, anything I can do to make being in a new environment less stressful?

    - How can I check the other eggs to see if they're fertilized?

    I also bought another chick at the state fair 2 days before this little surprise graced our coop. I think she's 3 weeks but not sure. I was hoping I could maybe integrate her into this new 'family unit' so that when she's old enough to be introduced to the rest of my flock she wont be the only new one, thus not the only one getting picked on or singled out. Do you think this is a good idea? If so, when should I introduce the chick from the fair?

    Thanks for reading and please excuse my inexperience! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2011
  2. Bantam Username

    Bantam Username Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 3, 2011
    Wiltshire, UK
    I can't help with much but the chick shouldn't really have ground layers pellets as its too much calcium and can cause the chick development problems so mum and baby need to go on chick crumb as soon as possible. Its fine for mum to have it at the moment as she won't be laying yet. [​IMG]
     
  3. boogiedog

    boogiedog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The chick should get chick food (which is fine for mom too) or a flock-raiser type food that is good for all ages. You may want to suppliment the mom with some treats for extra protein - yogurt, etc. Access to good food and water, and some quiet is fine. I put my broodies in a dog kennel inside the coop, locked in. They get to see and hear their buddies but don't get hassled. As far as adding the 3 week old, I wouldn't. The mom is going to be very protective of her one chick.

    Now, if the other eggs don't start hatching very shortly, she may get up and abandon the eggs. Were the 6 eggs found in the same nest you found the chick? If so, perhaps you have a whole clutch of chicks on the way.

    You may want to candle the eggs (a small, bright flashlight that you can shine through egg) and see if they are clear (infertile) or if there is veining or more. If the eggs are from the same clutch, they should be very dark with an airpocket at one end - likely indication of a chick in there ready to come out. You may even see movement (which is totally cool, IMO).

    Good luck!
     
  4. tinychickies

    tinychickies Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 26, 2011
    I don't understand how you are not expecting any chicks. Don't you know that you have a broody hen that has been sitting on eggs for at least 21 days? Proof is that one hatched already. Are those remaining 6 eggs the same batch under your broody hen? If they are, then just hope that others will hatch soon so you will have company for the little cutie.
     
  5. HopperVal

    HopperVal Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 8, 2011
    New Hampshire
    Thanks everyone very much for your replies!

    Got ya about the layer pellets, I'll pick up some chick food tomorrow.

    I'll candle the eggs as soon as I get home [​IMG]

    Quote:Most of our hens have exhibited broody behavior before and we thought that we'd have babies but it just never happened. So, we let them lay on the eggs if they want in the off chance we'll get chicks but after so long & laying on them with no results we just assumed we weren't getting any [​IMG]

    But last year we lost our only rooster and got a new one. I suppose he's the difference.

    Yes, the 6 remaining eggs are all from under the same hen, where we found the chick.

    Thanks again everyone, I'll let you know what the eggs look like when I get home and take a look at them [​IMG]
     
  6. HopperVal

    HopperVal Out Of The Brooder

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    New Hampshire
    Alright, so I candled the eggs and there is for sure at least 2 more that are fertile. We were in kind of a rush because momma was getting upset without her eggs.

    Baby is doing well. Chirping a lot and hiding under mom and eating. Any behavioral changes I should watch out for that could be indicative of illness besides the obvious lethargy?

    I'll check back in with updates as things develop. [​IMG]
     
  7. chickchicks

    chickchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2011
    warrington uk
    look out for a poopy butt ! thats a no no !
    vent needs to be cleanand no poo poo aloud !

    good luck with the rest of the eggs and your lovely suprise chick
    [​IMG]
     
  8. HopperVal

    HopperVal Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 8, 2011
    New Hampshire
    LOL thanks! I will certainly keep an eye out for that.

    Moved Momma, chick & eggs to a bigger box last night. They seemed happy for the extra room [​IMG]

    The hen's being a great mom and both seem happy and healthy! Still waiting on the other eggs to hatch. My husband thinks I'm crazy 'cause I called him over frantically yesterday because I thought I heard one of the eggs hatching. Turns out I was hearing things and it was a false alarm [​IMG] I swear I'm not crazy though, just anxious [​IMG]
     
  9. chickchicks

    chickchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    warrington uk
    dont blame you i would be the same !
    (and i am !)
     
  10. tinychickies

    tinychickies Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 26, 2011
    I sure hope those other 2 eggs will hatch soon maybe more! [​IMG] Just be sure to post pictures of the little cutie (and her sisters) with good mama. Can't wait to see them. I can feel your excitement after all those frustrating years of trying. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     

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