Broody hen w/chicks in coop with older hens (?)

joebryant

Crowing
11 Years
Apr 28, 2008
5,542
42
271
SW of Greenwood, INDIANA
Has anyone ever kept or tried to keep a broody hen that set on eggs, hatched them, and raised the chicks unseparated from but along with the other hens/rooster in the same coop/run? If so, what was your experience?
 
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miss_thenorth

Songster
12 Years
Dec 28, 2007
2,071
25
201
SW Ont, Canada
My experience has been fine. Momma chicken does a great job teaching and protecting her little ones. We are going on week 4 with the little chickies,and they cohabit with 9BR pullets, 1 BR cockerel, 5 sexlinks, one RIR roo, and 5 other gamebirds. Not one problem.

They do need a hiding spot or two,and also a warm spot for cold nights, when momma has to snuggle down and keep her babies warm.
 

skeeter9

Songster
12 Years
Apr 10, 2007
2,104
3
201
Foothills of Central CA
I've done it several times and have never had any problems. Momma takes care of the chicks, and the other flock members help to teach them about proper flock etiquette, etc.
 

joebryant

Crowing
11 Years
Apr 28, 2008
5,542
42
271
SW of Greenwood, INDIANA
Thanks, Skeeter9, I wish that I had known all this when my little silkie was setting her eight eggs. If I had known, I'd've left her and her single chick in the coop with the other hens and the rooster. I wonder what would happen if I put the two of them in there now.
 
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swtangel321

~Crazy Egg Lady~
11 Years
Jul 11, 2008
3,858
29
201
When my silkie hen hatched her babies I kept her in the same coop, I blocked her off for a few days in till everyone hatch !!! Did it for a few reason !!! 1 b/c I didnt want chicks getting lost and walking off without her and 2 b/c I had a hen the wouldnt stop laying in that nest (she would lay right next to the other hen and lay an egg and then the other hen would roll it under her) after about 2-3 days I removed the board and everyone was happy, Good luck !!!!
 

Portia

Songster
11 Years
Feb 29, 2008
919
17
149
South Central PA
My SS hen hatched out 8 little ones 3 weeks ago. For the first 1-2 weeks they were in the coop that is used by all 15 adult chickens....no problems. By the end of the 2nd week she had taken the chicks outside where my chickens free range on an acre. She is very protective and I often see her and the chicks eating among all the others without incident. In fact, both of my dogs were at one point very curious about the chicks, but mamma sussex put them straight and they no longer even look in her direction when they are out in the yard.
 

Tuffoldhen

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Jan 30, 2007
7,502
76
301
WV
I've raised them like that no problems, I did keep the hen and chicks in a large dog crate (it was her nest to hatch in) for a week and then let them out with the hens and roo. They did just fine.
 

Frizzledhen

Spear Gunnin' Coons
12 Years
Feb 17, 2007
886
5
161
Michigan
I have done it both ways. I found that if the hen is at the top of the pecking order there is usually no problems with leaving her and her chicks in with the rest. On the other hand, I have lost chicks to canabalism when the ma hen was at the bottom of the pecking order. I now leave ma hen and her chicks in the coop but separated from the rest for 2 weeks. This way the little chicks move better and are able to get away form any of the mean old aunty hens.
 

joebryant

Crowing
11 Years
Apr 28, 2008
5,542
42
271
SW of Greenwood, INDIANA
Quote:Hmmm, well maybe it's a good thing that I didn't leave my little silky hen in there with them because she would have been the bottom of the peciking order with three Orpington hens and one rooster. I might try letting her in the run with them now that the chick is a couple of weeks old just to see what the reaction is from the larger chickens. When the silkie and chick are in a large cage on the grass, the Orpingtons gather around to study them.
 

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