About a week ago, I tried letting my mama out to free range with her 4 chicks at rhe same time my other four hens were out. The hens never bothered the babies. However Mama chased and dominated the hens, not protecting the chicks, but taking over the dust bath hole, the waterer, etc. The hens give her wide berth or else! She doesn't seem interested in ther chicks. She picks on two of them terribly. She goes into the big coop at night and I've always put here back with the chicks. Last night I let here stay overnight with the big hens and the chicks were by themselves. (they are about 7 weeks old). At 5:30 am there was such a racket! Mama was clucking her head off! The hens were all huddled together in a corner. Mama was the highest in the pecking order before she was broody. So I put her with the chicks and they flew to her and she still seemed agitated and paced around a lot but was finally quiet. Did she miss her babes even though she's been nasty to them? Will they lose interest in her first before they separate from her? My main concern is that I see the largest chick not being able to get to food and water because mama chase it off if she's close to it. It just seems thst she's lost that mothering instinct. But went crazy untill I put her back with them.