Motherhood made her crazy


10 Years
Sep 6, 2009
Ridgefield, WA
As I posted earlier last week I had two hens go broody and hatch small clutches. The first hen had gone into hiding to do her "business" and came out 3 weeks later with 3 peeps. Seeming very proud of herself. Well mom and peeps are in their own area and she has taken the task of teaching her young ones very much to heart. Refuses to eat out of the feeder and seems to only want feed on the ground. Scratches like a mad hen
the dirt flies and so does the feed. On most days I find the water simply buried in dirt
I come home to large craters in the pen and the chick feeder covered in dirt. I am going through so much feed.
The chicks look to her for direction and overall she has done a good job just a little over the top. The peeps seem to be eating and drinking well. The second hen hatched two peeps and lost one so she has a lone chick. Now she is quiet, no wild moves but like the other hen does not use the feeders that the feed store just swore by for chicks and moms. Both are doing their job but each is so very different.
It sounds like you are putting feed on the ground. If you want her to teach her babies where to eat, keep your feed in the feeder. Problem solved.
The feeder is available all day while I am at work so they have plenty of opportunity to explore and sample while mom is taking a break and just supervising. I figure in the long run mother nature will have more to do with chick raising than me. While the peeps are still quite llittle I can wait it out and when they have more size to them apply more tough love and hopefully she won't be such a "mother hen" by then either. Until then I can bend a little and comprmise. They look to mom for direction as it should be, I just wanted them to have more food in their bellly than dirt.

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