Need Advice on New Chic in Flock!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by SillySilkies, Aug 17, 2007.

  1. SillySilkies

    SillySilkies Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    Hi Guys!

    It's been 2 years since I've had chicks and I've forgotten everything! HaHa! One of my hens hatched a beautiful black and white Silkie chick(guess I missed an egg, eh?) The hen was an awesome mom and kept track of the little one constantly. Now that it's about 2 months old she's begun to sit on eggs again and leave him/her alone....she's even pecked at the chick when it gets too close to where she's pecking outside. I've never had a mom and baby together (ordered my chicks from a hatchery the last time). Is this normal mother behavior? Has she "weaned" the chick away from her as other animal moms would? It seems like that's what she's doing. Is this normal?

    I can't even tell if it's a he or a she yet (can someone please remind me what the traits are to look for in a 2 mo old Silkie chick to see if it's a boy or girl?)

    The funny thing is...it seems that one of the other hens has suddenly taken on the mom role by making that special coo-sound to the chick when she spots a bug or piece of bread, etc.... and the chick comes running. Is this normal behavior to suddenly have one of the other hens start acting like that? (The "new mom" was sitting on eggs for a while, too, but none hatched. Maybe she feeling maternal?

    I just worried about the little thing.....it eats and runs around fine, all feathered out, etc.... gets along fine w/ all the other hens and the rooster (quite amazing that there was no fighting among the group or no one attacked the chick!).

    I made a makeshift house in the run for the mom and the baby b/c it could not get into the chicken house, but now I want to get the baby inside w/ the rest of the chickens (mom goes in now and baby stays out). I was thinking of just locking them all in there for a few nights and letting out in the morning so the baby gets the idea. Is this a good idea?

    Thanks for all the help!!!


    ~Beth
     
  2. allen wranch

    allen wranch Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    San Marcos, TX
    Mom is telling the chick it is time to be more independent. This usually happens when the chicks are around 6 weeks old, but it is not unusual for her to keep mothering older chicks if she is not setting on more eggs. Once she starts setting again, she is ready to move on.

    Silkies are very motherly birds, and the other one adopting the chick is not unusual either.

    If the chick gets along OK with the other birds, putting it in the coop with them at night is a good idea.
     
  3. SillySilkies

    SillySilkies Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    Carla,

    Thanks for your reassurance!! I poked my head in the coop last night and the 2 mo old chick is sleeping snuggled under the "new" mom in one of the laying baskets (have not been able to break the Silkies of the habit of sleeping in there). As a tiny thing it was sweet to see baby poking out from under the mom, but now it's hysterical b/c the new adoptee mom is sitting there lopsided and tipped over from the size of the chick under her! Too funny!!

    It's so interesting that the white Silkie has taken over the baby and become it's new mom. My Silkies are so broody and would sit on eggs all day long if I didn't drag them out of the coop every few days and make them sit in the sunshine! The Barred Rock I have does her duty and is off and running....no motherly instincts happening there! She's too afraid she'll miss something fun in the run! HaHa!

    Thanks again!!
     
  4. birdlover

    birdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Hi SS!

    I have a single chick about the same age as yours and s/he's been on her ( [​IMG] ) own for a couple of weeks now. Seems to be very independent now and doing great. I once had a hen that gave her chicks the boot at about 2 months and my gold laced wyandotte took over the mothering soon after. She mothered them for another month or more! Aren't chickens sooo interesting and fun??!!!

    Ellen
     
  5. allen wranch

    allen wranch Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    Glad it worked out !

    Could you post a picture of lopsided mom and her adopted chick. Better yet, send it to Rob and see if he will post it as a pic of the week. Sounds precious...
     

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