First time with broodies

heatherfeilner

In the Brooder
May 27, 2015
18
1
24
Illinois
Hi all,
I have two first-time broodies that decided to share a nest.
They have 4 eggs between them and are on day 10. I candled the eggs and they appear to be doing great. At first I thought that having the two share a nest could be great because they don't seem to mind each other and when one takes a break, the other is still there to tend to the eggs. Now I kind of wonder if this is a bad idea-- could there be a custody battle when the chicks hatch? Lol
I could separate them and give one a new set of eggs but I am not wanting too many chicks this winter.. This whole thing is kind of a trial for all of us.
I also am situated to take care of the little ones and provide heat for as long as they need, but will I need to intervene much or will the mommas be able to handle it this winter?
My coop is in the back of my garage and is pretty well insulated and also has good ventilation.
I have my fingers crossed for a good outcome, but this, I think will be a learning experience for both me and the girls :)
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,023
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
They could do a great job and share mothering duties. Or one could walk off and leave her sister to tend the chicks, or they could fight over the chicks, possibly injuring them. One thing I'd recommend that you do is set up their broody area so the rest of your flock can see them, but not get to the nest or chicks when they hatch. But, that will depend on your flock dynamics. It's not unusual for an other hen to attack newly hatched chicks. It doesn't happen in all flocks, but it is a distinct possibility. You should not have to provide extra heat if the broodys do a good job mothering their chicks.
 

Percheron chick

Crowing
8 Years
Apr 12, 2013
4,653
3,148
391
Hudson, Colorado
I would let one continue and break the other. As long as the chicks have a momma, they don't need extra heat. I have a hen with chicks outside right now and we just had a stretch of single digits. They didn't care for the snow but they didn't notice the cold.
 

heatherfeilner

In the Brooder
May 27, 2015
18
1
24
Illinois
Good to know:)
I have 5 silkies, three leghorns, two newhamphires and a fly tie rooster. All but the silkies are going to a new home Sunday where they will get a better property to free range. All my silkies are pretty laid back, so I'm hoping they all accept the newbies with no issues. My main concern was the heat, but my partridge silkie has so far been bound and determined to be a mother and I think she'll make a good one :)
 

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