How can I introduce day old chicks to a broody hen?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Eggscited, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. Eggscited

    Eggscited Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 6, 2010
    We have 4 partridge silkies in our "flock": 2 hens, a rooster, and one "teenager". The adolescent chick was the only one that hatched out of 10 eggs from a spring brood. When the hens started laying again, I put a few of their eggs in an incubator, and yesterday, TWO hatched. They are so adorable, fluffy and sweet. Then, last week, unexpectedly, one of the hens went broody again. This time, she has 6 eggs under her. I would like the hens to raise the new chicks outside, and although I've read a lot on this forum about putting the chicks under the hen at night, usually it is after the hen has already hatched her brood, or if the eggs are not fertile. This little lady has 2 weeks to go. Also, one of the eggs under this hen now shows a peck from the outside, and that was one of the problems with the first hatch.
    My main question is whether people think that the broody hen will "take" the new chicks and how can she possibly raise them while still sitting on the batch of eggs. But, I am also worried why on earth the eggs under her keep looking like they are pecked from the outside. Any ideas? Should I dare try to put the babies under her tonight?
     
  2. LarryPQ

    LarryPQ Easter Hatch!!

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    Jul 17, 2009
    You can only try!

    It is easier for the momma to take them at night, and then they have a whole night to bond.

    I would sit out there and poke at her after you sneak the chciks under her. Then she is pissy at YOU and protective of them. I find it keeps the newbie broodies from pecking at the "strange moving things". Nothing like an enemy to make her protective.

    Make sure you check on her regularly.
     
  3. Eggscited

    Eggscited Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 6, 2010
    Thank you for the info and encouragement. I will be sure to keep a good eye on Mama Hen and those chickies tonight.
     

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