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Hatching Questions

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by jfarm, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. jfarm

    jfarm In the Brooder

    Aug 2, 2007

    I am so excited that one of my hens finally decided to sit and hatch some eggs! Well, one hatched lastnight (it's been 20 days) and there are 10 more under her. How long should I let her keep sitting? Also, she is sitting in a nest box pretty high off the floor. Should I move her and the new chick down to ground level so the chick can have access to food and water? Does the new chick need food and water right away, or can it stay tucked under the hen for a day or so?
  2. skeeter9

    skeeter9 Songster

    Hi, JFarm,

    Congrats on your hatch! It's so fun to have little ones - especially when you've got a hen doing all of the work!!

    Yes, you should move mama and her nest to ground level ASAP. The chicks don't need food or water for a couple of days, but they can fall out of the nest, then mama has to divide her time between the remaining eggs and the chick - not a good thing-, not to mention that the chick could get hurt.

    My last hatch with a broody hen lasted about 3 days, so you will want to let her sit on the nest until she decides she's done. Usually, the hen will know if the eggs are going to hatch or not ( instinct). Just to be on the safe side, though, if there are eggs left after 3 days or so, you can hold them to your ear and see if you hear any peeping or tapping.

    When the time is right, the mama hen will start showing the chicks around and teach them how to be chickens. It's pretty amazing to watch them communicate, etc.

    Good luck with the rest of your eggs. Let us know how it goes and make sure to add pics!!!!

  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Good luck on your hatch. Do what skeeter said and enjoy the little family. One thing though, if you have ants or predators like rats around, be careful as they can kill chicks before, during, and after hatch.
  4. jfarm

    jfarm In the Brooder

    Aug 2, 2007
    Thanks for the replies.

    I moved the hen, eggs and one little chick down to the ground level. Everyone seems to have made the move successfully. Just waiting for more babies to hatch!

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