Free Range Mama Hen not getting chicks back in coop at night?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by TripTrapMtnHomestead, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. TripTrapMtnHomestead

    TripTrapMtnHomestead Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2011
    Western NC
    Our hens have 1/2 acre fenced where they free range each day. There are several goat houses and the coop. For several evenings our Mama hen would roost in one of the goat houses and I would have to move her and chicks each night into the coop. Last night she was back in the coop for the first time but with only one chick! I searched all over the field with a flashlight for the missing 3 chicks and couldn't find them. Finally decided to try one time with the Mama hen. I held her and walked with her clucking and finally heard the peeps I was hoping for coming from under the coop. The 3 chicks were all huddled together under some rolled fencing. Got everyone back into the safe coop and they all snuggled right under Mama hen.

    Today I am thinking we need to fence a small 10x10 area for Mama Hen and the chicks. We may put a door on one of the dog houses to use as a temporary coop for them... or I will continue to move them into their coop every night. Then we can use this smaller fenced area when our incubator chicks are ready to move down to the field.
     
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    SW Arkansas
    You might try a small fenced area for a few days. Some broody mama's, especially first-timers, can be pretty clueless shortly after hatch, but most figure it out in time.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2011
  3. snowflake

    snowflake Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 21, 2009
    Belding Michigan
    I agree with a small area for a couple of weeks. What breed is she?
     
  4. TripTrapMtnHomestead

    TripTrapMtnHomestead Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2011
    Western NC
    thanks!!
    we set up our dog kennel for her... it's 10'x10'. It has a dog house inside for shelter and last night I moved them all into the coop for safety. we might just put a door on the dog house so i don't have to move her each night. the chicks get right through the chain link but they stay close then go back in to be with mama. i'm going to line it with some small chicken wire and keep working on it until they are fenced properly... that way i know it will be ready for our incubator chicks next month.
     

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