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Beginner looking for guidance.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by TXmama3boys, Mar 24, 2015.

  1. Hello. I currently have nine 14 week old barnyard mix pullets in the coop and six 2 week old pullets (speckled Sussex, astralorp, and partridge rocks). I also have a shipment coming in April. There will be 4 ameracuana pullets, 2 Madagascar game pullets and 2 ameracuana cockerels. Sorry for all the name dropping. I am just wanting to be thorough. I am beginning to wonder if I am in over my head? Haha! Don't answer that. Anyway, after some research, I found out the Madagascar game hens are supposed to be extremely broody. My plan is to have them raise some chicks for me. Nobody around me has any experience am I am just wanting to see if anyone here has any tips or wisdom on how to go about integration and letting hens raise chicks.

    Thanks so much!

  2. kecker-wolf

    kecker-wolf Hatching

    Mar 16, 2015
    It would be nice to let the hens raise the chicks, but that can be risky. The hens may smother the chicks, or possibly step on them and end up killing them. I had a broody hen that I let take care of her chicks and all the other hens chicks. But sadly before the week was over 2 out of 13 were left from that weeks hatching. I'd recommend taking care of them yourself, plus you'd get to take care of your babies babies!:love
  3. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Songster

    Dec 15, 2011
    SE Pa.
    Letting them raise the chicks with the flock is the best way to raise them. They have been doing it for a few thousand years. I have only lost a couple over the years with a broody raising them with the flock and they died by misadventure not fratricide. I have both totally separated the broody to hatch as well as letting them hatch in the coop, can work either way. Either way when the broody leads them into the flock she does all the work to integrate them, it is the easiest way to integrate new birds.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  4. Thank you both very much! It is wonderful to hear experienced people give opinions. I appreciate you taking time to answer.
  5. X2
  6. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Free Ranging Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    I have had several broodies raise chicks and have yet to have one smother or accidentally step on her chicks. I think given enough space, there shouldn't be a problem. I especially saw the benefits of having a broody raise her chicks within the flock. My first broody of the season hatched out 5 chicks, and they were introduced to the flock at around 2 weeks old. When the chicks were 4 or 5 weeks old, the hen was killed by a raccoon. The chicks had already been accepted by the flock, so they got along just fine.
  7. Great! Thank you very much.

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