I have a mommy hen who had 10 chicks 6 weeks back. As soon as she went broody i put her in her own little coop with small wired outside area too. When they were about 4 weeks i opened up the wire a little every day for mommy to finally have a bit of freedom and to teach them the ways of the big world and start intergrating with the rest of the flock. She would always stay close to her coop and at the slightest sign of danger, round up her babes and head for cover. Since i started letting them mix, the rooster has been on her case in a big way, she started laying again, and when i go close up in the evening, there she is roosting with the rest of the hens and her babies are running riot outside. Has she abandoned them, are they big enough to fend for themselves, has this got something to do with the roo getting to her too soon? Its like her maternal instinct went up in flames!