Hen hatching out ducklings... HELP!!

savvydel

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 30, 2013
2
0
7
Hello,
I am brand new to this forum but am very eagar to get some questions answered regarding a problem i'm having with a broody hen. She's been sitting on 10 duck eggs since the beginning of this month and we had our first hatch early this morning (very exciting, as this is our first time doing anything like this!!). When we first saw the baby, we just looked at it from under Momma hen. Later we went out to check on it and saw that it was pretty dried up and we couldn't resist picking it up for a little while. When i went to put duckling back under Momma, she watched my hand and I could tell she was getting protective, of me holding her baby or the baby getting put back into the nest, I'm not sure. A few hours later (about an hour ago) we took baby out again and pulled mom off the nest to take a break as well. We put the baby by her and she puffed up and pecked it. We took the baby away and now are not sure what to do. We tried putting baby back in the nest after momma sat back down but I think she's seeing him as an intruder?? So Im not sure exactly what to do. Maybe we were wrong in taking the baby out in the first place? She is still sitting on 9 eggs that should start hatching soon. Im just wondering if maybe she's not such a great mother, or if it was our fault. My idea is to keep the duckling inside for the day and then put it back under her tonight so she won't see him so much as an intruder. Any and all feedback would be greatly appreciated!!!!! Thank you!
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
May 3, 2009
118,815
338,644
1,977
New Jersey
welcome-byc.gif
Her chicks are hatching and she is becoming defensive. She is not a bad mother, she is a good mother. It would be better if you stopped bothering her and allowing the eggs to chill and lose humidity at this point in the hatching process. Mother birds have been doing this for thousands of years and do far better if we do not interfere.
 

savvydel

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 30, 2013
2
0
7
Thank you so much for your feedback!! Ok so you think it would be fine to put the duckling back under mom and just leave her and baby alone until the rest of the eggs hatch?
 

JanO

Songster
7 Years
Jul 25, 2012
325
13
103
Western Washington
You could try to put the baby back tonight, but she still may reject it. Hopefully she will think it's one of the others that are hatching, but there's not guarantee. But, other than that stay away and let her alone. She is doing her job and when she's ready to show off her little family, she will without your interference. Just give her a couple of days to warm up to the idea of sharing.
 

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