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

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by frontyardca, Jul 21, 2016.

  1. frontyardca

    frontyardca New Egg

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    Jul 16, 2016
    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 :) [​IMG]
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    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.
     
  3. frontyardca

    frontyardca New Egg

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    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!
     
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    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.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    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.
     
  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    I did have a broody hen kill chicks that weren't hers, and never tried it again. I'm glad to hear that it can work! Mary
     
  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    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.
     

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