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adding new chicks to the flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by CoffeeCow, Nov 14, 2010.

  1. CoffeeCow

    CoffeeCow Songster

    Apr 29, 2010
    Washington, NC
    my wife wants some new chicks this spring. she has already picked out the ones she wants from MPC. so, heres the question..

    we have a flock of 9 now, if we get baby chicks, can we just slide them under a broody hen? and how would you do this?

    if we don't have a broody at the time they arrive, can we start the chicks in the house (in a brooder) and slide them under a hen later? what age will she know that she didn't hatch them?

    In other words... I don't wanna go through raising them in the house again.... once was enough hehe.

    or... should i get eggs, and hope someone goes broody?

    lotta questions, i know... sorry

  2. If you have a broody hen you could just put them under her, but the chances of that happening when you want is slim. I don't think it would work very well if you try to put chicks that are older than a week under a hen but I have never tried it. I would not risk the babies. I personally am in the same boat as your wife but I know that my current girls are in a coop just big enough to support them comfortably without being too small/large. I cannot put anymore in there and I don't want any troubles so I am going to convert part of a shed into a second coop, add a run, and have two seperate flocks.

    Space, breed and age are huge factors in integration, and if you are off on just one aspect you will have issues, and perhaps even lose them.

    Eggs are a total crapshoot unless you get them local. Once they leave the hatchery and are enroute, anything can go wrong. You may only hatch 1 out of every dozen, not worth it in my eyes.

    Good luck!!
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    If you had a hen that had been broody 2 to 3 weeks, you could try putting them with her in the nest the first night you get them, after she has gone to sleep and with as little commotion and light as possible. She might and might not accept them. The older they are the less likely she will accept them. They are already 2 to 3 days old when you get them. It could and probably should work, but there are risks. The older they get, the greater the risks.

    I don't know your set-up. I never raise chicks in the house. I set up a brooder in the coop and raise them there. As long as you can keep them warm and out of drafts in a predator proof place, they should be fine.

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