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How does the hen control the sex of chicks?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by onthespot, Aug 29, 2008.

  1. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    I ahve seen this posted many times on here, and no one in desagreement, was wondering how this worked. Anyone want to spell it out for me or give me a link that would explain it? Thanks.

  2. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

  3. goldensunriseranch

    goldensunriseranch Songster

    Jul 1, 2007
    Mays Landing NJ
  4. Pauline

    Pauline In the Brooder

    Aug 6, 2008

    a question for you if you please,

    my hen has just hatched 3 baby chicks, she has lost a lot of weight, as i would have expected, the chicks are nearly 2 weeks old, at what age can i take my hen away from them and put her back with my other hen's so as she can be free again, and put some weight back on, when may she go broody again, i am presuming the chicks at 2 weeks old do not need heat lamps while they are with her, will they need one when i take her away,

    any help would be great, will put some pics on of our new arrivals soon

    Thanks Pauline
  5. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Your chicks and that hen will be better served if you let her continue to raise them. In about 6 - 8 weeks she will be finished with them and won't 'mother' them.

    Be sure you are leaving her and the chicks plenty of starter feed. The higher protein in the chick starter will be very good for her. Also give her treats to boost her nutrition. Setting is really hard on many hens and they do often sugger weight loss.

    Give her and the chicks a place to wander and roam. she will gain weight and recover. She will also teach the chicks everything they need to know.

    If you take her away from the chicks you will have to brood them yourself with heat lamps and teach them everything they need to know - like what to eat and when and where to roost etc.

    Do not be in a hurry to take the hen away from her chicks. It is not good for her or the chicks unless you plan to be the Momma Hen to them and teach them everything. If you take the chicks from her you can't introduce those chicks to the flock until they are about 16 weeks old. Then you have some rough roads to travel. She won't even know them as her chicks and they will have to find their place in the pecking order the hard way.
  6. ginasmarans

    ginasmarans Songster

    Jan 15, 2007
    West Tn
    I agree with MissPrissy. I ususally leave a hen and chicks together until the chicks are fully feathered,at least a month. If you take them away very much sooner,you may have to take the hen's roll,and she may go back to brooding anyway.She will do fine and gain weight alot faster taking care of the chicks then she would if she were running from roosters.
  7. thepetpaw

    thepetpaw Songster

    Jul 27, 2008
    How long should you leave the light on in the brooder for chicks?

  8. deerman

    deerman Rest in Peace 1949-2012

    Aug 24, 2008
    Southern Ohio
    Brooder temp. start at 95 degree reduce 5 degree each week. So after 4 weeks if your temp is around 75 degree no longer need brooding. Depend on your area and time of year. The main temp is night temp.
  9. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    4 weeks?? Sorry this is incorrect for many large breeds. My blue orpingtons aren't even completely feathered out at 4 weeks.

    You need to slowly wean them from the heat lamp. Early spring or later in the fall they may need more heat for a longer time. I have even had some chicks need heat for 10 weeks.

    Just remember if you take the heat away too soon and they get chilled you will have chicks that will get sick very quick and often they can't recover from it. You can begin weaning them from the heat by turning the light off during the day and letting it run at night until they can regulate their own body heat and stop huddling. If they get chilled and huddle up too tight the ones ont he bottom are most likely to die from suffocating and being piled on. If you turn off the lamp and after a while they are not spread out but are huddled together they are most likely getting chilled then you need to turn the heat back on.
  10. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    Sure am glad Miss Prissy is here to keep us all on the right track[​IMG][/img]

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