Broody hen killing new born chicks.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by jboy8888, Jul 12, 2016.

  1. jboy8888

    jboy8888 New Egg

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    Jul 12, 2016
    Ottawa, Ont, Canada
    Hi, I'm having a problem with my broody hens killing their newborn chicks. I have been looking on the internet on why the hens are doing this and some reason is that they don't have human instincts or that they are bad parents. But I always find the chicks laying in the middle of the coop. Today, when I was about to pick one of the "abandoned" chick, it had peep and 3 of the broody hens got out of their laying spot and became violent and started to attack the chick and killed it [​IMG] . Is it best that I remove the chicks when they are freshly born?
    This is my first-time rising chicks after I inherent my chickens from my Opa. Are there any pieces of advice on raising chicks?

    Side note**Non-broody chickens are not with the broody hens.

    Questions:
    #1: Why are the broody hens killing?

    #2: Doing I remove the newborn chicks right away?

    #3: How do I raise then? Ex: Feeding, heat, and etc.

    -Joel
     
  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    My broody hens are ALWAYS in a big dog crate in the coop, NEVER in company with other broody or non-broody hens. They are hormonal and emotional, and don't need or want the stress of close interactions with others. Baby chicks don't know any better, and it's not unusual for disasters like this to happen. Confining all of them in the same close conditions is a bad plan, IMO. Some broodies may be fine, but I would never plan on it. Each should have her own digs, with her chicks, for at least a week or so, and then be carefully watched to make sure that it's okay to mix with others. It would be more natural for them to have more space, which we need to provide. Mary
     
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    I'm gonna agree with Mary, some hens have troubles bonding with their chicks, and when there are multiple hens there often is confusion and no one claims and recognises the chicks, I've seen it in chickens and turkeys. Next time pick a broody and break the rest, or separate or plan on pulling chicks as they hatch. Not every hen knows what to do with chicks and hatching is always stressful for me, unless it's one of my experienced hens. You have seen how quickly chicks can be killed, so do what you can to have your hen isolated and free from other broodies.
     
  4. jboy8888

    jboy8888 New Egg

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    Jul 12, 2016
    Ottawa, Ont, Canada
    I do have crates, but I don't know if I put one hen in each crate that they would reject the eggs? Do you know if broody hens are comfortable to be moved? -Joel
     
  5. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    southern Michigan
    I set up the big dog crate in the coop during the day; bedding, food, water, etc. At night, with a tiny flashlight, I quietly move the broody and her eggs into the back or the crate on the bedding, lick the door, and creep away. She may scream at me in the morning, but isn't let out, and usually (but not always) will settle into motherhood in the crate. I clean out the big hunks of poo, and freshen up here food and water, during the incubation, and let everyone out when the chicks are about a week old. Mary
     

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