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Do chcikens ever eat their chicks?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by rhino533, Sep 28, 2011.

  1. rhino533

    rhino533 Chirping

    Apr 21, 2011
    Do Chickens ever eat there dead or alive,or maybe sick chicks? or could other members of the flock eat them? The reason I ask is yesterday I have 7 chicks and this morning I only have 6. I search the whole coup and the chick was nowhere to be found. I've had the same thing happen last hatch of eggs. I checked to see if there was anyway they could get out from the coup and from what I could see there was no way they could. I'm just a little bit confused to where the chick has gone too. That why I ask if they ever eat there own chicks. The chick was 1 day old.

  2. laceynoelle

    laceynoelle Songster

    Nov 12, 2009
    Ive never had the hen eat one, but once I had a Rock that took another hen's chick and ate it. We ate her to compensate. [​IMG] Its best to house them seperately just in case. Could also have been a squirl or cat, somthing along those lines. Good luck with your other babies!!

    ETA: Ive also had tiny chicks (Even from standard adults) Squeeze out of standard chicken wire. It doesnt happen often, but that could be an option as well.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2011
  3. rhino533

    rhino533 Chirping

    Apr 21, 2011
    Do you think a rat might take a chick? I've seen rats in the coup before.
  4. krcote

    krcote Songster

    May 21, 2008
    Concord, NH
    When my broody hen went wrong she sprayed little chicky brains and guts everywhere. I never found one foot that I think she consumed, but I don't think she really ATE a whole lot of them.
  5. bantyshanty

    bantyshanty Oval Office Courier

    Oct 6, 2009
    S.W Pennsylvania
    Yes, definitely. A rat would eat a chick. It could kill your adult chickens too. Could you put up some wire or mend holes so that no more rats can get into the coop?
    Could you get or make your hen a crate to raise her chicks in until they;re old enough to take care of themselves? At least that's better for sleeping at night.
  6. 202roosterlane

    202roosterlane Happy Hen on a Harley

    Feb 24, 2011
    Central Arkansas
    That would be my vote. Scarey [​IMG] Rats have to go! I hope your baby chick finds it's way home.

  7. rhino533

    rhino533 Chirping

    Apr 21, 2011
    I bet it's rats. I've put screen (like in screen doors) all around the wire and coup but the basterd rats always find a way in. My gut feeling is it's the rats. I really hate them.

    The chicks are tiny Japanese Bantams easy for a smaller rat to take.

  8. silkielover5

    silkielover5 Songster

    Sep 11, 2011
    Hudson WI
    Quote:we have lost many chicks and adult birds to rats. aslo hucks will kill them to
  9. rhino533

    rhino533 Chirping

    Apr 21, 2011
    How do adult birds die from rats? Get bit and get sick? or?
  10. Jloeffler

    Jloeffler Songster

    Jul 22, 2011
    Northeast NC
    My broody hen killed one of her chicks before we could stop her. I've heard others on here say that some hens will attempt to "clean up" after a bad chick, one that is unhealthy or just wrong, by eating it. Ours wasn't given a chance so I don't know for sure. Hopefully yours just squeezed out a hole and finds it's way back in tonight.

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