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Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by chickenrookie16, Aug 11, 2010.
how do you introduce chicks to a hen?
and how do you know if she accepted or rejected them?
I am going to disagree. I have given chicks to broody hens several times, and it has always worked out very well for me BUT, I'm also very careful about when/how I do it.
1) Let the hen be broody for a few weeks first - it's best if you can wait for the 3 weeks it would take her to hatch her own eggs
2) Bring the chicks in at night when the hen is asleep. I will usually introduce them from the back (under her tail) if possible, just so it's not so obvious that this was is a "foreign" chick.
3) Watch for 30 minutes or so. If she's not pecking at them, or trying to get them out from under her, she's probably accepted them.
I also disagree with chicmom and agree with Springchickens to some point.
The hen has to be a broody but not for 3 weeks, I have given chicks to a broody who has been setting for only a couple days.
I agree you have to do it at night in the dark, just slipt them under her and stand back and watch for a bit. If she doesn't peck them or move off the nest to get away from them I think you will have success.
I would be sure that once daylight comes to check them out again and see if shes trying to teach them to eat and drink.
Bantams make great moms of any kind of chick.
I agree...I've seen this done many times before with great results. Make sure you do it at night and try to keep the chick quiet before you put them under the hen.
but why at night?
Well, guys, that's good to know........I am mistaken.
Quote:At night works best because she's more subdued. If she tries to peck at you during the day, she won't at night. She'll also be more accepting of the chicks which just "hatched".
During the day might work too, but I've never been brave enough to try it. I convinced my last hen that 13 chicks hatched from one golf ball!!
My kids were given a banty chick this spring and our existing flock did NOT appriciate her at all! We put her in a smaller cage (cat carrier) so she could come in the garage on cooler nights and in the rain, and we could put the carrier in the run with the other girls. It took a looong time (longer than I would have expected) but they finally let her in their little club.