Adding 5 day old chicks to momma with 4 six day old chicks...advice please!

frontyardca

Hatching
Jul 16, 2016
6
0
7
Hello! We are less than a year into the wonder that is chicken rearing :) and were lucky enough to have a broody successfully hatch 4 chicks. I was really hoping more would hatch but they didn't. So today my husband surprised me with 5 day old babies!!

Based on my reading, I'm planning on adding these chicks under momma at night, with the back up plan if she rejects them of raising them myself. Any advice on how to do this?

Here are two of the polish day olds :)
 

oldhenlikesdogs

I Want Ice Cream
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Jul 16, 2015
45,844
80,747
1,522
Wisconsin
It depends on the hen. Most will attack them. It's best to add them in the first day or not at all. Some hens will take anything though, so you never know. I personally am never comfortable with the adding them at night technique, too much can go wrong.
 

frontyardca

Hatching
Jul 16, 2016
6
0
7
Thanks oldhenlikesdogs, I was very nervous myself! Luckily, we slipped them under her last night, without protest from her. Then I nervously monitored them all day. And to my great relief, tonight the little ones went under mom an hour before the bigger chicks. I am hoping this will be a success!
 

oldhenlikesdogs

I Want Ice Cream
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Jul 16, 2015
45,844
80,747
1,522
Wisconsin
I'm so glad it's working. You have a bit more guts than I have. I do learn new stuff every day on this site. I sometimes am too pessimistic, and worry too much, so I'm glad I was wrong. They are so cute.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
27,729
21,506
907
Southeast Louisiana
Yeah, some hens will mother anything, some can be pretty picky. I’d have been nervous at that age myself but I’m glad it is working. :thumbsup I’ve tried both, the night technique and adding them during the day. I’ve probably had better luck adding at night, but normally both work. Normally.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
27,729
21,506
907
Southeast Louisiana
The only time I’ve had it fail was when I had a broody hatch as well as an incubator hatch. I’d been having snake problems so I only had a few eggs with the broody and started several in the incubator the same day. The broody hatched two eggs two days early, both red chicks. The incubator hatch was on time, so the hen had two days to bond with the red chicks. There were red and black chicks in the incubator hatch. When I put them all together during the day, the hen accepted the new red chicks but rejected the black chicks. I had to raise them myself. She did not try to kill them, but pecked them to drive them away, then left them alone.

That was her second time being broody that year. The first time she hatched yellow, red, and black chicks and raised them all. I just think it was bonding with those red chicks this time.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom