Introducing day old chicks to mother hen with two week old chick

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by franko, Sep 15, 2012.

  1. franko

    franko Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, I have a mother Buff Orpington with one two week old chick she hatched. I have thirteen Lavender Orpingtons day old chicks comming this wed. I'm ready with a brooder for them but would like to see if the mother hen would except them. Anyone have any experience and advise?
     
  2. FirewifeJess

    FirewifeJess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do it in the pitch black, late at night; sneak them under her while she sleeps and keep a close eye in the morning (be up before her!) to see how she reacts. You might actually have more problems with the 2 week old than the mama, if she's a good mama. Good luck!
     
  3. franko

    franko Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just wondering if I should do all at once or try three or four chicks the first night and see. If all goes ok put the rest in.
     
  4. FirewifeJess

    FirewifeJess Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hmm, that I don't know. I will point some people this way...hopefully someone more experienced will chime in.
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    If her baby is already 2 weeks old I don't think she'll take them. My experience has been that by the time the chicks are 3 days or so old, the momma is intolerant of other chicks, to the point of killing them.

    Your hen may be nicer than mine, you can try it at night and see how things go but I'd be there at dawn watching her and making sure she didn't try to injure the chicks. Maybe just a few at first so you'll be able to remove them easier if things go wrong.
     
  6. franko

    franko Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you. I was also thinking about putting three or four eggs under her tomorrow and see if she will set and then swithch out Wed night with day olds.
     
  7. Sudsy Chick

    Sudsy Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2011
    Washington State
    I have to agree with this - she probably won't take any new chicks after two weeks. If you do try - be sure to watch very carefully.
     
  8. franko

    franko Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I could put the two week old chick in my brooder and try putting the day olds under her. I don't really want to mess with mother nature though.
     
  9. Sudsy Chick

    Sudsy Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2011
    Washington State
    The thing is - your broody hen has been talking to and taking care of that first chick for over three weeks now. Both in and out of the egg. She is bonded with her mama - and both of them will likely be unhappy if you take her away. I would not take away the first chick if I were you.

    I have heard of some mama birds that will take orphans and/or babies not their own. Out of all the senerios you mentioned - that's the only one I would try if I were in your place - and only if I knew she was a proven, good mama. If you do try to add your baby chicks - but do watch very carefully - she will likely reject them (again - because she has already been taking care of chick #1 for a few weeks.)
     
  10. franko

    franko Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Momma hen is so protective of her own chick, I don't want to take a chance on losing any new ones, so, I think it's the brooder. Wish I could have received chicks sooner and it might have worked. Thanks for advise.
     

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