Moving my Cochin hen and her eggs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by cli88, Apr 17, 2016.

  1. cli88

    cli88 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 17, 2016
    NY
    Our Cochin has decided to nest in the highest nesting box in the coop. She has 7 eggs under her. The box is just under 5 feet off the ground. She's 13 days in and We are worried sick the chicks will fall to their death!!! We built a similar (much lower) box on the other side of the coop. We waited until night and tried to move her into the box. We moved her eggs first. Then her. She got right out of the new box, went back up to the old one, and was searching for her eggs. We gave her about 10 mins to try to figure it out but she just went and laid in the old box. So, we stuck the eggs back under her and she's as content as can be. What should we do??? The chicks can't be so high up! Once they hatch can we move them?
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    You will have to wait until hatch day. Hopefully someone will be around to check on them. I wait until most or all have hatched and then move the group to a wire enclosure. Most of mine are willing to sit on any remaining eggs for another 12-24 hours. Most broodies won't move as you have seen. Most hen hatched eggs hatch on day 20.
     
  3. cli88

    cli88 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks so much! We will have to be super attentive. Thankfully day 20th falls on a Sunday and then I am off work for spring break that next week. It should work out perfectly. I'm feeling a bit better about it. This is our first group of chicks... We've just been so concerned they would hop out! Any chick advice is also welcome!
     
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I have had chicks hop out, so that's why I hover during a hatch. Hopefully they will hatch early in the day so you can move them in the afternoon. I use a piece of hardware cloth formed into a wire circle where I move my mom and babies to the floor. If any eggs remain they get moved too. I put food and water about 6-12 inches away. The chicks won't eat or drink for about a day.

    The hen will mostly sit for a few days then start getting up more. I like to keep my family confined for a week or two before letting them out to move around, confining them at night if necessary. Other hens may try to fight with them mom sometimes and they will peck at the chicks. If you hen can she will defend them.

    By two weeks of age most chicks can get away and keep up with mom. I switch my whole flock over to a non medicated grower until the chicks are old enough to lay. Though I personally don't feed layer anymore. Always have a separate dish of oyster shell.

    You will have fun watching them grow and thrive with a hen tending them. They will be more skiddish, so if tame birds are important try to handle them a bit.
     
  5. cli88

    cli88 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 17, 2016
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    How high do you make the hardware cloth cage? Will the other chickens leave them alone enough with that around them?
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Mine is a 3x9 piece. The 3 foot is high. I haven't had anyone get in it and chicks can't get through, a top can be made with chicken wire if necessary.
     
  7. cli88

    cli88 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 17, 2016
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    So far - We have had one chick hatch and one died hatching. One pipped this morning around 8am maybe?? But it has not stopped moving since it pipped. And it isn't breaking through any more or zipping around the egg. We are worried! Do you know if this is normal?? The egg has been rocking all day. We are worried we should intervene. We don't want to lose another chick :-(
     
  8. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Are you incubating or hen hatching? I might free it's head, but don't pull it all the way out, it might be stuck to shell.
     
  9. cli88

    cli88 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 17, 2016
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    We pulled the eggs from the hen because she kept getting off of them. So we are incubating them. The egg has just been wobbling back and forth for hours. We haven't heard it chirp in a while. Just moves back and forth. Perhaps we should crack a small hole for it?
     
  10. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Do you have enough humidity? They can stick to the shell and can't turn in the egg, I would remove a small hole. The danger in helping if it's too early the yolk could still be getting absorbed, so be careful. You might get a better answer in the incubating forum, it has been a while since I've used an incubator.
     

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