I think I blew it!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by JenniferK, May 20, 2011.

  1. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
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    We had a broody hen again who sat for about a week and a half, and I thought instead of letting one hatch eggs this time, I would do the chick trick -- slip a few under her at night so she could be Instant Mom. Well when I cleaned up the hen house and got a separate area set up for her, it apparently irritated her enough that she decided not to be broody any more. In the meantime, the previously broody hen that hatched eggs last year decided to be broody again, so I thought, fine we'll give chicks to her. My kids chose two chicks and my friend who wanted more chickens took nine, and of course they all wanted to see this, so against my better judgement we introduced the chicks to her in the daytime. She seemed to tolerate them so we left them for the afternoon. In the evening I went out to check and two were under her where they had apparently crawled, and the rest were hanging far away from the hen in the corner. So I sat and watched for a while, and whenever one would come near her, which included trying to eat their food, she would peck them and they would run back to the corner and cower. So now all eleven are in my house and my question is, do I even try sneaking them in with her tonight or is it pointless? I don't know if it was too many, too soon, or she's just not falling for it...
     
  2. Smith farm

    Smith farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 3, 2011
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    It's always best to sneak them in at night when she should be trying to sleep. give her a day or so and try again at night this time
     
  3. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
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    OK. Do you think 11 is too many?
     
  4. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    Northern California
    I'm bringing this up again because I think I'm going to try again tonight, and I am SCARED! I'll wait until after dark, but I'll also have to move the hen from the regular nesting boxes to the chick-safe area, so that's one more thing to disturb her. So should I go ahead with all 11 chicks? And do I need to go out and check throughout the night to make sure she's not killing them? Should I just wait until she's been broody a little longer, but the chicks are bigger? Any input would be appreciated!
     
  5. SIMPleChick

    SIMPleChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 10, 2011
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    I say there is no harm in trying! If it doesn't work you can put them back into the house, good luck!!!
     
  6. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
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    Do you mean "no harm" literally or figuratively? I mean, the way she pecked them before I worry about them ending up dead. [​IMG]
     
  7. Robin'sBrood

    Robin'sBrood Flock Mistress

    May 8, 2008
    North Carolina
    How long has she been broody? I think if she just went broody she isn't ready for chicks yet, since it takes weeks to hatch eggs out. I had two broody bantams last year and if I had let them they would each have killed each other's chicks. You may have to raise those chicks yourself just to keep them safe. Best wishes!
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2011
  8. JenniferK

    JenniferK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think that's part of the problem. We got them for another hen that had been broody for about two weeks, and she just decided not to be broody anymore, but this hen started only 4 or 5 days ago. I thought at least this is the one who hatched some eggs last year so she definitely knows how to be a mom, but maybe that little brain is doing some kind of math and knows it's not time yet.
     
  9. Mehpenn

    Mehpenn Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 1, 2011
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    I'd move her in the morning to the chick safe area, then tomorrow night try to slip the chicks in with her. That way, that's one less disturbance she'll have to deal with.

    Good luck! And hey, if it doesn't work, at least the chicks can depend on you!
     

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