Keeping hen with chicks in brooder with other chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Desert-Chicken, Nov 22, 2012.

  1. Desert-Chicken

    Desert-Chicken Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2011
    Hey there folks,
    I should be getting some new little chicks within a couple of days. And 2 of my hens are going broody and sitting on eggs, and we decided to let them sit on them till they hatch. My question is: will I be able to put one hen with the hatched chicks in the same big brooder with the 2 week old chicks (which are a different breed from the hen), as I prefer to separate the hen and her chicks from the main pen, and it's going to be difficult to organise an area for her with food and drink, and a brooder with it's feeder and drinker, as well as the main coop. So anyone have an experience on keeping a hen and her chicks in a brooder with other chicks?
    Thanks for ur help!
     
  2. aka Rachel

    aka Rachel Chillin' With My Peeps

    I tried to introduce a three week old chick to my broody and her newly hatched chicks and it did not go well.

    You can certainly try, you will know immediately if she will accept the chicks.

    Another option is give the older chicks some small area that they can go to/get under that the hen cannot so they can at least run away from her.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Desert-Chicken

    Desert-Chicken Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2011
    Hey Rachel,
    Thanks for your advice, yes I think it's a very good idea to leave a big box (with windows) with a hole big enough for the chicks and not big enough for the hen, so the chicks can escape there, I think I'll try that.
    Take care!
     
  4. Desert-Chicken

    Desert-Chicken Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2011
    So I have another question, as I'm new to raising chicks (although I have had 1 rooster and 3 hens for about a year now):
    Do u think it's a better idea to move in the hen and her eggs in with the chicks in the brooder before the chicks are due to start hatching? Or after 1 has hatched, or after all have hatched? Well I actually have 2 hens sitting on 4 eggs altogether, but I'm planning just to move 1 hen and give her the other hen's eggs/chicks too, as they both started sitting on their eggs at roughly the same time. I also plan to leave the hen in the brooder with the chicks just for roughly 1 month, as my experience from these hens is that when they're raising chicks they don't lay no eggs for about 6 months, so I'll just leave her care for her chicks in the brooder for about 1 month, till I see the chicks seem big enough to no longer need her, then I'll move her back into the coop and hope she'll start laying again within a few weeks as I like those eggs!
    PLEASE ADVISE ME!
    Thanks!
     
  5. cbenson6820

    cbenson6820 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 3, 2011
    as a general rule of thumb i would say keep older chicks away from broody hens and hens with chicks, but it all depends on your chickens personality. When my light sussex go broody i can lift them up and check for eggs or chicks and they dont mind. They even let other chickens in their nest box with them while sitting with no issues. Those chickens i think would be fine with some older chicks. I have a polish silkie cross thats meaner than hell when shes broody and would probably injure if not kill the chicks that weren't hers. When she is broody i have to fight her to check for eggs.
     
  6. Desert-Chicken

    Desert-Chicken Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2011
    Thanks for your advice! In the end I decided to play it safe, even if it was a bit more work, but I built a separate brooder for the hen so the hen and her chicks will be separate from the other chicks, and everyone seems ok with this arrangement, although it is more work, I had to make another feeder, and now I have 3 feeders and waterers to attend to... but I guess it's just for a couple of months or so. My next issue is dealing with RATS! They have found my broody hen and ate up all her food last night (thankfully I bring the chicks in at night so they're safe). Once my broody has her chicks do u think the rats might attack them even if they're snuggled under their mother?
     
  7. ducks2chickens

    ducks2chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 10, 2013
    Can you send a pic of your brooder. I'm trying to get an idea for my hes brooder box.
     
  8. mithious

    mithious Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have read where rats have eaten eggs and chicks, so yeah, it's possible, be careful!!! Plus rats carry all kinds of diseases, so don't get bit either!!! Glad rats aren't part of our predator problems up north here...we have enough predators but no rats..yuck!!!!

    Good luck and hope you get this problem with the rats worked out!!!
     

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