How long will hen stay on the nest once some of her 9 eggs have hatched?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Peaky, May 5, 2017.

  1. Peaky

    Peaky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My hen had/has 9 eggs under her. At least 3 of the chics had hatched by this morning. How long will hen stay on the nest once these chicks have hatched? Should I lift her up once it gets dark and see whats happening under her? OMG!! her chics are cute.
     
  2. Poultry parent

    Poultry parent Chillin' With My Peeps

    They stay on a day or 2 after the fist few hatch
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Not every broody has the good sense to get off unhatched eggs after a couple of days and start caring for her live chicks. I make it a practice to remove any unhatched eggs after 36 hours after the hatch date, as long as they all began incubating at the same time, and that then forces the broody to turn her attentions to her chicks.

    I've heard of broodies still sitting on unhatched eggs a week after the hatch date has passed. This isn't productive unless the eggs were deposited in the nest at staggered intervals. Even then, a staggered hatch with that kind of time spread isn't going to be good for the chicks.
     
  4. Peaky

    Peaky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Then will she teach them and show them the food and water
     
  5. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    That all depends on the broody. Some are super devoted mothers. Some lose interest right away and abandon their chicks, and some are somewhere in between.

    Right now I have a broody with two two-week old chicks. She did indeed teach her chicks to eat and drink, and until just lately, she wouldn't even eat much, making sure everything edible she ran across went to her chicks. She even snatches food from their tiny beaks if she thinks it's too big for them to handle and breaks it up and gives it back to them. It's a real hoot to watch a fine broody and her chicks.
     
  6. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    I have long railed against staggered hatches. The main reason is because it bum=fuzzles the hens' natural instinct about how to care for her biddies. Hens' under normal and natural conditions usually leave the nest on her own after 3 days (aka 72 hours). This is not a hard and fast rule but it is what is best for the chicks. This gives the chicks a chance to absorb all of the yoke sack thus preventing infected chick navels that come from dragging the yoke sack over the contaminated ground in the coop or run. Leaving cheeping eggs in the nest discourages the hen from leaving, but not for long.

    Chicks have a natural instinct to peck at everything they see in their environment. Don't take my poor words for it do a little science on your own to prove or disprove it. The next time that you hatch off a clutch of eggs put a clean page of news print down in the coop. When they emerge from the nest the first thing that the chicks will do is to begin trying to eat the commas and periods off the news paper. Next add say a 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of baby chick granite grit on the paper. Watch the little terrors pick the pieces of grit right off the paper. Next add a table spoon of raw., old fashion oat meal and watch the little hellions gobble up the flakes, last add a hard boiled egg that has been finely crushed. Do all this in full view of the broody hen because she will up set the whole apple cart and scatter the chicks' food all over Hades and half of Georgia. So the chicks should have access to their vittles but keep the chick starter where the hen can not get her bill on it or her feet in it. The hen will waste more feed in 15 minutes than a flock of ostriches can eat in a month. Just keep the water where the hen can barely get her bill in it. With bator hatched biddies a little green food coloring in their water is better than the mother hen in pointing out water.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
    2 people like this.
  7. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Chickengeorgeto [​IMG] Most excellent post
     

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