Can I take chicks away from mother chicken?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by NapoleanGoose, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. NapoleanGoose

    NapoleanGoose Songster

    Mar 4, 2010
    Bishop CA
    My banty Cochin hen hatched a couple of babies 3 wks ago, three Cochin x Columbian rock mixes and one Faverolle. These last couple of days she's been very negligent to them. She leaves them behind, and ignores them alot and because we have hawks I worry for them. I had a hawk swoop down and try and take them when I first let her into the yard with them, but since moving her I hadn't had any problems. She's back out in that yard now that she's taught her chicks how to jump out of the grow up pen in my front yard. Today I went out and they were all crying for her and she was a half acre away hanging out with the rooster! I've taken them away for now because I saw some hawks in the trees, and she hasn't even come back by the same area yet. She's back in the coop and with all the other hens. Is it okay to take them away? They are upset because they miss their mamma, if I take them away how can I get them used to me, or a stuffed animal as their mom? Will it just take time?

    Thank you.
  2. calicokat

    calicokat Songster

    Apr 2, 2009
    azalia, indiana
    My momma hen had a "come to Jesus" talk with her kids right at 4 weeks - and the next day she quit hanging out with them altogether. It looked like she went out of her way to run off and hide, leaving them on their own. She had taught them everything they needed, even had them roosting up with the big birds in the evening - so I guess her work was done, and she was walking off the job.

    That may be what's going on here, just a little earlier than when my momma did it. Have they been around your whole flock much yet, to try to integrate? Maybe instead of taking them away, you could try taking them out to her with the rest of the flock and let her finish teaching them how to be big kids??
  3. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Sounds to me like she has quit.

    I had a mama quit last week and since then the chicks just come running when they see me... cuz they know I'm always going to have food.
  4. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Songster

    Dec 28, 2009
    I always take my little bitties from the hen once they have hatched and about a day old..mainly because i don't have s seperate area for her and her little i put them in a brooder along with lots of food and water..have done the same now for several hathces and they turned out fine. some hens , like some ppl. are not meant or cut out to be mothers..
  5. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member 9 Years

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    She's done her job. In another week to ten days she'll be laying again. 15 eggs or so later, she'll go broody again. That's how cochins operate. Put them in their own secure pen. They are ready to be on their own.
  6. Bat Cave Silkies

    Bat Cave Silkies Songster

    Feb 11, 2010
    Bat Cave, NC
    I would NOT advise that you allow the chicks to stay with the rest of the flock~~~they'll end up dead.

    Mom has finished her job, now it's your job to take care of them until they're old enough-large enough to survive with the flock.

    As normal practice, I allow the chicks to stay with their mother hen for a week, then I remove them and raise them in a brooder. I've found that their growth rate is better, I have more survive, and they get use to being handled.

    Good luck
  7. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    The chicks are three weeks old and they are with the flock, no problems! I think it depends on the flock themselves.
  8. NapoleanGoose

    NapoleanGoose Songster

    Mar 4, 2010
    Bishop CA
    Thanks everyone. I'll go ahead and raise them myself. I only hatched one faverolle this year, I really don't want to risk these chicks with the flock. Goodness gracious they are brooding machines! [​IMG]
  9. ISayWhatThe

    ISayWhatThe In the Brooder

    Nov 20, 2013
    I am going through a similar dilemma, my Cochin has hatched 3 black chicks, I dunno what breed they are because I asked the supplier for a mix and I'm not that experienced and forgot what I got. She is being a great Mum and I really don't want to take them away from her but I see many dangers. I have separated mum and the three chicks by putting the two ISA Browns in a separate pen, and I hate doing that to them, one was kind of broody with the Cochin and I think she is yearning a little. I am totally emotionally involved and feel guilty for the slightest action of mine that doesn't serve them.

    The upshot is I have decided to let her do her best :/

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