Broody Hen with 4 day old chicks... question?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by humphrey farms, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. humphrey farms

    humphrey farms Chirping

    Jun 28, 2012
    Naples Maine
    Born in a double tier coop where the nesting area is on top and a run area underneath & is located in the corner of my 8 x10 chicken coop. The ramp is long gone. But it was the safest place for my broody to be for 21 days because the run area is secure. The peeps have been in the top part for the last 4 days where her nest was but are now outside the coop on the bottom tier that is basically just a pen underneath. The hen has food ,water, grass, and some shavings on the bottom run area.
    How did the peeps get from the top tier without a ramp? It's about a foot drop.[​IMG] How long should I keep the hen & her peeps from joining the main flock? (20 adults) They free range all day in a fenced acre of land that doesn't get mowed. They only return to the chicken coop to lay eggs and to roost at night.

    I don't want anything to happen to the baby chicks. I mean, GOSH, they are so small.[​IMG]
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 Free Ranging

    Feb 18, 2011
    They jumped. Where mama goes they will follow, or at least try. I usually try to keep them separated for a few days until I know all the chicks are doing fine. I keep them in a pen or run with a doghouse or crate for them to sleep in. Then if she is being a good mother I just open it up and let the mothers take them where they want. They usually go back to the doghouse at night.
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    I’ve seen a broody get chicks out of a ten foot high hay loft. She says jump; they jump. When they land they get up and run to her.

    I generally let Mama take them where she will when she will. Kelsie’s method is not bad either.

    Hens have been raising chicks with the flock for thousands of years. They are living animals so no one can give you any absolute guarantees but most of the time the other chickens don’t go out of their way to bother the chicks. If they do Mama has such a bad attitude about it that they get tired of getting their butts whipped so they quit bothering the chicks.

    When Mama weans them they are integrated in the flock. They still have to handle the pecking order but the other chickens understand the chicks have a right to live with the flock.

    Bad things can happen but that’s usually when Mama gets separated from her chicks and can’t get to them to protect them. If your space is tight that will make it harder on Mama too. Sounds like your space is not tight at all.

    I’ve even seen the dominant rooster go over and babysit when Mama gets stuck on the wrong side of the fence from some of her chicks. Chickens live in flocks. They pretty much have it figured out if they have enough room to be able to act like chickens.
  4. humphrey farms

    humphrey farms Chirping

    Jun 28, 2012
    Naples Maine
    Thank you. I am going to wait another day or two as we have 2 Labs. They go into the fenced acre where the flock roams so... just want to be cautious. They leave all the chickens alone but don't want to take a chance on the tiny morsels behind their Mom. Unless you think the Broody will defended them against our two dogs with a peck..
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    The broody would die to defend them, but it just depends on how determined the dogs would be to taste those nuggets!

    I'd also let her range with the flock as soon as possible. It's better for the chicks to grow up in the flock than try to bring them later when they're half grown. This way momma has a more normal social life, also.

    Have you ever watched those tv shows that show those ducks that nest high in a tree? The baby ducklings drop like 20 feet when momma is ready to leave, and they do fine. They look so fragile but they're tougher than you think.

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