chicks 9 wks old & hen still w/them in nesting box, not roosts!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by 2overeasy, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. 2overeasy

    2overeasy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2010
    Birchwood, TN
    My BO hen and her 3 chicks are still sleeping in a nesting box at night! What gives? They will be 9 weeks old tomorrow and they still try to stuff themselves underneath her every night. She's not taking them to the roosting poles as the other hens have when their chicks were around 4-6 weeks old. She takes her chicks every night to the nesting box. And it's getting a bit cramped in there!
    This is her 2nd batch for the season. Her first chicks were in July. And she abandoned them at exactly 4 weeks: went up to the top of the roosting poles and never paid any more attention to them. They were too young and they spent the next few weeks hiding in the woods until bed time. She wouldn't have anything to do with them.
    Now it's opposite extremes. Should I make her go to the roosts at night?
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    I would try to put her and the chicks up there. It may prove to be an exercise in futility though. You'd have to do it every night for a few nights at least and hope the little light bulb goes off in mama hen's head.
  3. 2overeasy

    2overeasy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2010
    Birchwood, TN
    Yikes! That doesn't sound easy - but it never is. But this is weird, isn't it? There's plenty of room on the roosts. There are 4 different sets of roosts, and with her and the chicks, 28 total chickens. The building is 10X24 ft.
  4. ChickenMack

    ChickenMack Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 7, 2011
    Give them some time. When she is done mothering, she will be done. It is in her DNA. My RIR was done at 6 weeks but your BO may have it in her to mother longer. No worries, it will happen in her own time.
  5. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 6, 2011
    Pacific North West
    I took 3 weeks for me. Open up the side door and they were all in a nest and Blondie is up on the top roost. I took all the wood chips out of the sleeper and put them up every night 1 at a time and finally my Sex Link went in and got on the lower one so I moved her up to the top and put all the kids up again. This went on for another day or 2 and then Streak was on top with a couple of them and that was it the following night they went in you heard the struggle to get next to the one you love and then that magic sound ... [​IMG]

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