Late arrival- will mama hen accept another chick?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Goose and Fig, May 6, 2009.

  1. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

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    Apr 19, 2009
    Fall Creek Falls TN
    We had 4 chicks hatch 3 days ago. I took the rest of the eggs and put them in the incubator last night.(Not all of the eggs were hers) No pips pr peeps- and this morning we had one hatch. Will the hen accept her (after she dries out)- or are the other chicks too far ahead? They are already out of the nest and eating. Thanks!
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    You are dealing with living animals so there are no guarantees, but I think your odds of her accepting this chick are pretty good. I'd try it, but make sure you monitor to see what happens and be ready to intervene. It really depends on the hen.
     
  3. panner123

    panner123 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 15, 2007
    Garden Valley, ca
    Place the new chick under her after dark. She will wake up in the morning and take care of the new chick like it was there from day one. The other chicks may pick on it for awhile and then get bored with it.
     
  4. Big Chicken Little

    Big Chicken Little Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would take one of the other chicks out for a little while and put the "new" chick in with her then put the other chick back in and she should accept everyone ....Good Luck !!
     
  5. Lov'emSouthernEggs

    Lov'emSouthernEggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    East Carolina
    I agree with panner123. Sneak it in after dark.

    Another idea I had is to take a small cloth and rub it on your chicken and then rub the chick with it before you put it in the nest. We have done that with puppies that have been removed and need put back. That way when the hen smells it...it smells like her.

    I wouldn't pull a chick. Then you run the risk of the new chick getting hurt and then trying to re-introduce the chick you pulled and possibly that one getting rejected. [​IMG]

    Good luck! That Hen may surprise you.[​IMG]

    Oh, another idea I had...Take the new chick with you...handle all the chicks and slip all of them back at once. Your smell will be on all of them and she may not notice that one wasn't there to begin with.

    Let us know how it goes.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2009
  6. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

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    Thanks everyone! I will let you know how it works out.
     
  7. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    Virginia
    Something I realized about broodies and chicks - it's the chick that keeps track of Mama, not the other way around. I just put the new arrivals in after the broody's gone to bed as long as the new chick is dried off and mobile it will be able to keep up with Mama and co. That will give it enough time to imprint on mama.

    I have 3 identical (to me) blue Silkie hens raising 23 chicks of about the same age in a 8x10' pen. I can't tell who belongs to who, but believe me the chicks know which one's their mama! And none of them are biologically related to any of the 3 hens.
     
  8. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

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    *UPDATE*

    The little one is doing great. I had to put her in during the day so I could watch for a while- and we've been having crazy storms here the past few weeks too. She joined right in with the other chicks- hopping around, scratching, eating. After a while they all got tired and squeezed under mom- the new addition included. It looks like all is well. Thanks everyone!
     
  9. Lov'emSouthernEggs

    Lov'emSouthernEggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    East Carolina
    That's great! I'm really glad that it worked out! It's nice to hear happy endings![​IMG]
     

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