Hen picking on our new chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by KrystleJones, Sep 22, 2014.

  1. KrystleJones

    KrystleJones New Egg

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    Sep 15, 2014
    I have a hen that I've raised from a tiny chick that is several years old, her friend died a couple weeks ago so we bought a couple more chicks (3 weeks old) hoping she'd be sweet to them since she's been very lonely. She seemed the broody type as I'd found her sitting on her eggs often. But ever since they've been in the coup I've had to keep her out of it as she pushes them around and pecks them and eats their food. It's a lot more time and energy for us to keep them separated and I worry about her safety during the day since she's out of the coop.
    My dilemma is should I find a new home for her, and get another chick, or do you think keeping them separated until they are used to each other will work? It has been 3 days now.
     
  2. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    Three weeks is young to introduce them to a mature bird - unfortunately, previous broodiness has nothing to do with her willingness to accept newcomers. Until the new birds are about 12-16 weeks of age you will want to have a "look but don't touch" setup that allows both parties to adjust to the other without physical altercations at a time when the younger birds are ill-equipped to defend themselves. Your hen's behavior is 100% normal.
     
  3. KrystleJones

    KrystleJones New Egg

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    Sep 15, 2014
    Thanks for the advice! I really appreciate it.
    I don't have another run or coop to keep the chicks separate from the hen, nor can I afford to purchase or build one. I may just have to keep her out in our yard until she's ready to roost at night, which has worked fine so far, but then the chicks are having to sleep on the ground. :( Our neighbors also have chickens, which might be our only choice now to see if they'd like our hen, and we'd purchase another chick, rather than worrying about my hens safety during the day when we're at work.
     

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