Little Chicks Coming! Rambles and Musings and Questions~

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by auburn, Aug 10, 2013.

  1. auburn

    auburn Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2012
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    Just ordered four female brown egg layers from Meyer Hatchery. So excited! Hoping for at least one little Buff Orpington in there but, regardless. Chicks. [​IMG]Hoping that Dory takes kindly to the new babies. She's such a fantastic broody, and raised her first brood so well.

    She actually just got over a serious injury; one evening when we put the chickens back in their coop, we couldn't find her. She reappeared the next morning, some predator having gotten ahold of her and literally peeling away the skin under her right wing. We're still not sure what it was, but we think it was some sort of hawk, owl, or eagle, or at least something that attacked her from above, because when we found her, she was hiding under a thorny bush, close to the ground. We really didn't think she'd make it, but we underestimated her! Chickens are such amazing healers.

    I'm shocked she wanted to go broody again not just after that trauma, but considering it didn't look like much fun raising those chicks the first time. But she's been insistent! Too bad the eggs aren't fertilized with the roosters separated until the new pullets start laying. We've actually never tried this with any chicken before, so here's hoping for the best, and that she accepts the little ones we give her! [​IMG]

    Anyone have advice for switching out eggs for chicks? We're going to do it at night, when she's sleeping. Is it mostly just chance? She's also only been sitting on two eggs; she won't question the fact that there are four chicks, is she? She's one of our smarter hens so I worry.

    Thanks for any advice! Anyone else gotten brown egg layers from Meyer?[​IMG]
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I've done this a few times, with eggs and with day old chicks, and it's gone fine. No, she shouldn't notice the difference in number. Once I had a hen reject the chicks because I was silly enough to put them under her during the day. I tried again that night, and she accepted them! I think it's probably chance -- but I also think if they are truly broody, and have good mama instincts, they will most likely accept the chicks.
     
  3. sparrker

    sparrker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm getting 28 chicks next week from Meyer's. I just placed 2 chicks under a broody and she took to them fine, I did it at night. But unfortunatly after I came home from a day trip the next day they were missing and so were two of my other chicks from another broody, we found one dead and I (was grossed out) saw a hen eating a chick. I checked other forums and saw that this is common. So I would move the broody to another area away from the other chickens if at all possible. You don't want to see another chicken eating a chick:(
     
  4. auburn

    auburn Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2012
    West Michigan
    Oh goodness, sorry for the loss of your chicks! [​IMG] She'll be moved by the time the chicks arrive. I think part of the reason she went broody again is because she remembers that when she did it the first time, she got separated and spoiled with treats! Like I said, smart girl. [​IMG] We'll also have to move her for the sake of the other hens, though. Her growls and ruffled feathers seem to be scaring some of the more submissive hens away from the nest boxes. She does not play around when it comes to babies! [​IMG]

    Thanks for the comments, I feel much better about putting them under her now. [​IMG] Her mama instincts are amazing, so I'm sure it'll be fine.
     
  5. sparrker

    sparrker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How are your chicks from meyer's. This is a first for me, i've lost 8 out of 29. More being shipped next week.
     
  6. auburn

    auburn Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2012
    West Michigan
    Sorry for the late reply! Haven't been on in a while.

    One of the chicks died a few hours after being picked up. Another had a severe case of stargazing, but has recovered beautifully. The three chicks were put with Dory (two the first night, the stargazer the next night once she had recovered), and have been happily accepted by her. So far things have been fine, though we're still keeping an eye on them all.

    We received the typical three-or-so dollar credit for the lost chick but obviously can't ship just one more out. In truth the whole experience was a little strange and upsetting and I don't think we'll be shipping from a hatchery again. No offense towards Meyer, or any hatchery, but the risk involved with loss (especially when ordering such a small brood) just didn't seem worth it. If we order again from a hatchery it'll probably be Townline, simply because they're close and we can do a live pick up. Most likely we'll just be sticking with Family Farm and Home chicks options, though.

    I misread your post at first and thought that you wrote you had eight left! My bad. :'D Sorry about the losses, any idea on causes of death, and has your new shipment arrived yet?
     

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