How to get hens to accept a chick.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Sword, Jul 9, 2011.

  1. Sword

    Sword Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 27, 2010
    Mundelein
    I was taking care of a friends chickens while she's out of town a little while ago, and I found a few hour old silkie chick in the barn. All of her hens are in a kennel by themselves, so I don't know how she got so far away or what incubated the egg (would a duck sit on a bantam egg?) She was acting weak and listless, so I brought her inside, got her to drink a little water, and let her take a nap in my lap. After that, she perked back up. Once she stopped looking like she was about to drop dead, I gave my friend a call and asked what I should do with the chick, and she said to put it with the hens. I did, and one of the hens kept pecking her, another stepped on her, and the rest wouldn't even look at her, even though she was distress peeping nonstop. Since the hens didn't seem to have an interest in keeping her warm, I brought her home so she could spent the night under a heat lamp. Tomorrow morning I'm going to bring her back and try introducing her to the hens again. Any tips for getting them to accept her?
     
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    If your friend doesn't know which hen was broody, you'll likely not find out who hatched her. (yes, ducks will hatch chicks - but they'll try to take them for a swim which is not good for chicks) Any hen that didn't hatch it is likely to kill it.
     
  3. Sword

    Sword Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 27, 2010
    Mundelein
    I guess I'll let her stay until she gets back this evening then.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2011

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