momma hen hatching her own eggs

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by summerb76, Jan 14, 2009.

  1. summerb76

    summerb76 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 8, 2008
    Lake Como, Florida
    I am hopeing one of my hens will go broody and want to hatch some of my eggs. If that does happen can I just keep her in the coop with all the other chickens? And can I just let her protect the chicks once they hatch in the coop? I don't have any place to seperate her and the chicks from the others. Also what breed of mine will most likley go broody? I have RIR, NH red, barred rocks, EE, brown leghorns, black and red sex-links. I doubt the pheonix I have will, they dont even lay eggs yet. Thank you for helping me out on this.
     
  2. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Any of those breeds you mentioned *might* go broody, except possibly the leghorn, it all depends on the individual. Until one does, you have time to construct a separate pen/cage for them to use for brooding. It's also handy to have as a place to separate an ill or injured bird too.

    You can keep them together in the coop while they're brooding & also once the chicks hatch, but I like to separate them because:
    -it keeps the broody from getting interrupted by other hens
    -it keeps the broody from returning to the wrong nest box after her breaks
    -it keeps the mama hen & chicks where they can eat starter feed, where the chicks won't get into the layer feed, where the other hens won't gobble up the chick feed

    I wish you success, it's fun to watch a hen hatch & raise chicks!
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  3. FarmerDenise

    FarmerDenise Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2007
    Sonoma County
    You can leave the mom in with the rest of the flock. She will take care of them. I have found it is actually easier to have a hen do all the work. Phoenix make great mom's. Come spring your Phoenix may well go broody. I've had a Silkie and a Phoenix share a nest as well as the child rearing. It was great fun to watch. They fiercely protect their youngsters and the rest of the flock may even help. Even the roosters can be good nurturing daddy's. The babies learn a lot from the rest of the group.
    The biggest problem with leaving a hen and the eggs and or chicks in the hen house is predators. Rats love baby chicks. So I tend to bring the hens and chicks inside at night to keep the chicks safe from rats (our biggest problem here)
     
  4. dirtfishing1

    dirtfishing1 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 5, 2007
    Blue Ridge Mtns VA
    Quote:Have you tried putting a spread of pepper around the edges of your coup? Rodents hate pepper. IT also works very well in keeping them out of your cars.

    Dirt
     
  5. Portia

    Portia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 29, 2008
    South Central PA
    I let my hens brood their chicks in with the flock. They do fiercely protect them if the others get too nosy. If weather conditions are right they take them out and free range with them during the day, otherwise they feed and play in the coop. The only problem I've had is that in the first few weeks of the hen taking the chicks outside, we've had to help them find their way up the ramp and back in (our coop in a few feet off the ground and the hens tend to fly up to the pop door). After a few times of this they catch on and its smooth sailing from there. The only predator we've had take out a few chicks are the hawks, otherwise the dogs keep all others at bay.
    Good luck and have fun, its great to see a hen hatch and raise a brood of chicks...and so much easier than trying to do it yourself!

    Also, until the chicks start to go outside, I keep a feeder of starter/grower on the floor of the coop along with waterer set in a pan (to keep it as clean as possible). I hang the layer food for the older chickens so the chicks can't get at it until they can fly a bit, and by then they are going outside and are eating a variety of food and grit from foraging.
     
  6. crazychicken

    crazychicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 11, 2008
    NC
    I want mine to go broody soon too [​IMG] but if they don't do it soon that incubation bug is gonna bite me, I already have the Incubator running [​IMG].

    I have

    one BR hen -1 year old in five days
    one BR mix hen - 1 year old in five days
    one black sex link hen- 1 year old in five days
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2009
  7. summerb76

    summerb76 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 8, 2008
    Lake Como, Florida
    I would love it if I got some EE eggs to hatch. We only have 2 roosters, 1 EE and 1 phoenix. They both love all the girls. I will be happy with any new chicks though. The baby chick bug has bitten me pretty bad!lol
     
  8. FarmerDenise

    FarmerDenise Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sonoma County
    We got our first hatchery catalogs yesterday. I wanted to go right out and place an order. But we'll restrain ourselves for a few more months until one or two of our hens go broody.
    Thanks for that suggestion about the pepper. We'll have to try it. We're trying mint right now as a rat repellant, and I think it is working. And I got lots more where that came from.
    In order to keep the older hens from gobbling up all the chick starter, I place it inside of a metal milk crate. The openings in the wire are big enough to let the chicks through, yet keep the bigger hens out. This also gives the little ones a reprieve from the bigger birds. I tend to strategically place hide-outs for the little ones all over the place. Even a piece of plywood on a few bricks can give the little ones a place to get away, if a big chicken is getting too rough.
     

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