Adoptive hen

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by glebreton, Nov 11, 2014.

  1. glebreton

    glebreton Out Of The Brooder

    57
    5
    31
    Nov 8, 2013
    St. Martinville, LA
    Have a cochin bantam that is very broody. She has raised 2 clutches so far and went broody again in October. Usually I get 1/3 of the eggs she sets on to maturity, but she does well with the chicks that hatch. I figured since I lost her egg production for a couple of months, I might as well make it worth my time. Today is day 21 of this clutch, so last night I went to a local breeder and picked up some BC maran and Buff Orp chicks. I put the chicks in a box in the pen next to her so she could hear them peep. After about 15 minutes, she was clucking an purring back, so I placed them one at a time under her, with the eggs. Checked on her a few times in the night and she seemed to be taking them in. Will check this morning, hope for the best. She has proven her motherly traits, so I think she will adopt them, along with the couple more that should hatch today. Wish me luck
     
  2. Free Feather

    Free Feather Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am glad you had success doing this. I did everything they say you are supposed to do, and my bantam australorp still pecked the chicks badly. Maybe it was becuase they were three days old instead of one.
     
  3. Aphrael

    Aphrael Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,363
    83
    148
    Jan 21, 2013
    Texas
    It could have been the age, or maybe not. Some hens are super motherly and will happily mother almost anything. Others only want to mother chicks they have bonded with throughout incubation and hatching. Still others could fall anywhere in between!

    @glebreton Good luck! It sounds like a very promising start already!
     
  4. glebreton

    glebreton Out Of The Brooder

    57
    5
    31
    Nov 8, 2013
    St. Martinville, LA
    Thanks....so far so good. Chicks are still under her which is good, but I can't see the eggs she was setting on anymore, so I don't know the outcome of those. 6 chicks and 6 eggs under one bantam is a tight squeeze! Got a cold snap tonight and tomorrow, if they make it thru that I think they will be fine.

    She is my only bantam in the flock, but she has raised all the other girls' eggs well. Its funny to see a 12 week old "chick" as big as its mother hen, but she still keeps em in line. Great lil hen!
     
  5. Aphrael

    Aphrael Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,363
    83
    148
    Jan 21, 2013
    Texas
    Hahah! That is a funny sight to see. I have two cochin bantams and a d'uccle that go broody constantly and have raised all kinds of chicks (even ducks!) they are great mothers.
     
  6. glebreton

    glebreton Out Of The Brooder

    57
    5
    31
    Nov 8, 2013
    St. Martinville, LA
    Kinda puzzled. Found one chick dead with a broken wing about a week after doing well with adoptive mom. Looked like it was trampled somehow, but the hen and chicks are in their own pen separate from the flock. Next day, I found two more chicks dead, so now I have 3 of 6 left. I checked over the remaining chicks and found 2 of three with poo stuck around feathers on their butt so I pulled that off. Seem to have runny poop sticking to down. One is vibrant and following mom around pen. Other two that had a pasty butt are little less active, but still hanging in there.

    The breeder had some 10 week old pullets that he offered to sell, but I declined because I thought my Bantam would raise most of the 6 chicks I was buying that day. Already lost 3 of 6, so now I am considering either getting a few more chicks if he has some about a week old, or buying some 10 week old pullets. If I get pullets, what is better option, try to introduce 10 wk old pullets to the to adult flock slowly or put them in brooding pen with Bantam and 2 week old chicks? I think the 10 wk olds will not mess with 2 week old chicks, but mom bantam may not like them so much. Or if I get week old chicks, what is the chance that mom Bantam will take to the new chicks now that she has had 3 chicks for 2 weeks already?
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by