Broody BA - moving chicks under cover of night


10 Years
Jun 12, 2009
Des Moines
Questions for all you chicken geniuses.

I have a broody BA. She's been sitting in a nesting box for about a month now and shows no signs of stopping. I'm going to go to a nearby hatchery today and pick up some chicks to put under her tonight when she's asleep. I only have one other hen and our coop can handle 6 adult birds easily. I'm planning to pick up 3 chicks.

Here are my questions:
1 - Can I leave the BA in the coop with the other hen after I give her the chicks (assuming she accepts them without any problems)?
2 - Will the chicks be able to get out of the nesting box to get to food and water? If not, should I try to relocate the broody today (I've tried moving the eggs and she follows them wherever I put them)?
3 - Any words of wisdom I should know about? My girl is 11 months old and she's the most gentle of my little flock. (started with 8, but 2 went to freezer camp and 4 were given to friends)

I'm can't wait to have babies running around again!
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Maybe I posted this in the wrong part of the forum, but I'm not sure how to move it.
I've seen a lot of threads that should answer your questions. Perhaps do a forum search on "broody with chicks." In a nutshell, I think the advice was to keep Mama and the babies separated from the flock initially. Chicks can probably get out of the nest box to follow mama to food and water, but may not be able to get back in. So, penning broody and babies in their own small pen means you can set the nest box low to the ground and give them their own accessible food/water supply. The other prevailing wisdom I've read is that you should put the chicks under your broody in the dark of night for the best chance at her accepting them. Do that search. I'm sure you'll find all the info you could possibly want. Good luck.
I don't separate my broodies and they seem to do fine. My BA hens will not allow the others to mess with their chicks. They are quite aggressive in caring for their young. Mine have all done fine.

They can get out of the nesting box, but I have to put them back in at night for her. I have hatched chicks and gave them to my BA's, they took them just fine. I did it at night and worked out great.

I give my Silkies chicks all the time, they will take anything
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HEY-that is good information! My broody just hatched (only 3-my fault mostly) adorable little chicks but I felt the need to remove her from the rest after they it really ISN'T necessary?? I thought if there was a hatching during the night the other chicks would eat them or it is really okay to leave the broody in the coop with the others the whole time???
MotherJean - thanks for the suggestion. I've done a search but I hadn't found anything about being able to get in and out of the nesting box, so I wanted to ask.

Elite Silkies - awesome! Thanks so much, that's exactly what I was hoping to hear. I'm going to pick up my chicks tomorrow morning and then I'll feed and water them. I have to work from 1-7, so I should get home with perfect timing to put the babies under their new mama once she falls asleep. I'm SO excited!!!


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