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Best housing for hatching chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by mamahen16, Mar 30, 2015.

  1. mamahen16

    mamahen16 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 30, 2015
    Western WA
    I just had my first hen try to hatch chicks. The eggs ended up not being fertilized but I slipped some chicks under and she took them without missing a beat. Anyway, she was broody in the laying box so I didn't want the chicks jumping out from way up there. So I put them all into a giant horse trough with mamahen.
    The trouble I have is when the chicks are big enough to hop up onto the water then out, they can't get back in. Plus the make a big mess out of the food and water.

    So my questions are-
    Do I move the broody mamahen somewhere while she sits her eggs?
    What are your favorite ways to transition a broody mama with chicks?
    And how/where do you set her up with the chicks?
  2. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    Put a wire cover over the horse trough. I use hardware cloth but chicken wire works well too. You can use 2 pieces and link them together so you can lift up just one portion to get to feed and water. For my chicks last season, I has them in the garage. I went to the local Aldi's supermarket and got some f those triple this watermelon corrals. Then put chicken wire covers on them. Notched the sides of the heavy cardboard and laid apole cross from which I hung the water and feeders. Worked great! I have large fowl Light Sussex and raised 7 in each corral to 12 weeks old when I sold them. Then I just disposed of the cardboard corrals.
  3. mamahen16

    mamahen16 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 30, 2015
    Western WA
    Thank you! I think I have most of those supplies on hand even.

    How long should they stay in there? And is it ok to shut the mama in there too?

    The current chicks are now 3 weeks old and are out daily with mama and just tonight, one flew up on the roost instead of in the trough. Do I just let nature run its course and trust mamahen will take care of them appropriately?

    I have another broody hen that I'll use to hatch eggs so I'll need to improve my process before they hatch.
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2015

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