New born orphan chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by islandgurl, Jul 21, 2019.

  1. islandgurl

    islandgurl Hatching

    4
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    Jul 21, 2019
    Need Help PLEASE!

    I live in Hawaii and have wild free chickens all over and I have many in my years. I have one mom who had chicks 2 weeks ago, and just yesterday another momma showed up in my yard with 10 newly hatch chicks maybe 2 days old. She settled in around dusk in a spot I was uneasy about and long story short after doing my best to protect her she was killed along with all chicks but 3.
    I only thought one survived as I only saw other two later today, but last night I didn’t know what to do saddened by this I knew this baby had a better chance if I sneaked it with other momma hen that nests in my yard safely. It was dark and I slipped chick under her successfully.
    This morning I had to work before light and when I returned home I was happy to see the orphan chick with momma and her other chicks had joined too. I then saw the other two that survived yet they must of went and hid last night. I noticed the momma picking at them, not the one I put under her the night before, but only the other two chicks. They continued to try to stay with her and others, but as it was night she was more aggressive and shunned them. I went and grabbed them and when momma went to roost again for the night I slipped the two under her successfully. Now she has 3 orphans, but seems to only peck at the two chicks that most likely found her in the morning after making it through the night together. The one chick I introduced seems to have made it without her shunning it. Only the other two.. Now I have successfully got the other two picked on orphans down with her tonight when she roosted. I now worry what will happen in the morning. Is there a chance momma will accept them after they’re with her tonight as she seemed to do with the other orphan first night? Or will she continue to peck at them and drive them away? I see them stay off a bit hesitant to join too.
    Sorry long story, but needed to explain what I have done so far in this sad circumstance. I’m hoping for the best for mom to accept them finally or should I pull orphans out and care for them myself? As I said it seems she was only focused on the two orphan chicks that must of hid last night and joined her today, where the 3rd orphan chick I saved was placed under her when she roosted last night and is blending in without being shunned.
    Any advice on this?? Is there a chance momma will finally allow them all to join her flock without shunning them?
    I noticed momma pecked at them more when I was feeding them and when she was going to roost for the night. There was some times they were among the rest blending in, but every so often I’d see mom go for one of the two. It was quite sad to watch as they lost their momma last night and just want that connection. I feel helpless and am trying to give them the best chance for survival so they learn what they need to do as they grow..
    But, will momma get worse??
    Advice, suggestions please!
     
    BlueBaby likes this.
  2. Shezadandy

    Shezadandy Songster

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    Sep 26, 2015
    Portland OR
    That's a good question. Only time will tell.

    If you can be there first thing in the AM when they make their start for the day, it should be apparent. If the two that joined her brood this morning are still being pecked and treated badly, you'll need to remove them. If a night under momma's wing hasn't done the trick, I doubt anything will- I don't know how much scent plays into hen/chick recognition.

    Hopefully in the morning they just wake up and everyone is happy.

    P.S. Check them before you turn in for the night to make sure she hasn't pushed those two out
     
    FowlWitch and BlueBaby like this.
  3. BlueBaby

    BlueBaby Enabler

    You might have to end up raising them yourself if the momma hen doesn't want to accept them. They are too young to take care of themselves, and I hope that she won't kill them.
     
    ChooksNQuilts likes this.
  4. islandgurl

    islandgurl Hatching

    4
    1
    6
    Jul 21, 2019
    Aloha,

    Mahalo for the reply.
    This is helpful advice. When I put the one orphan under her last night only about 45 min after she settled in to her nest to roost for the night. I had no idea it’s something done in these cases. I then googled it and found I did do it the correct way, so I was hoping it would work. I was happy to come home to see her with the one orphan, but then noticed the other two that I had no idea survived too. I noticed watching she would give them a peck here and there shunning them a bit. Not the other one orphan I had place under her, and it could be which not sure if they notice color, but the one orphan is white like all her others and the other two orphans have black markings so it’s noticeable, but I doubt that is an issue for her noticing. There is 3 extra to her 6 so I’m not sure if they notice that either?
    If smell is an issue my scent would be more on the one orphan I had last night because I was holding it the whole time prior to putting it under her. The other two orphans weren’t held till this evening for about 15 min before placing them under her. She allowed me to do it with out a sound or problems. I did it quickly and left so it didn’t cause her any stress. She trusts me as I’ve been feeding and caring for them even though their free, they know my schedule and come to me when they hear me come home. She has watched me help her chicks without fluffing up or making any cries.
    Tonight I’ve been checking on them since placing them under her and they’re not kicked out. All quiet and good right now.
    I’m hoping that is a good sign that at least she allowed them under her for one, and is continuing to leave them under her without pushing them out.
    I’m hoping in the morning she will accept them after them being with her all night. I know it all depends on her, but I feel there could be a chance for them since she’s not kicked them out.
    She did allow them under her about an hour before dark and going to her nest to settle for the night. They all were under her about 20 min just resting before she began digging for worms again and that’s when again I saw her peck at them and the two orphans stayed off to the side. Even so young they knew to keep their distance staying together as she took the rest of her chicks to her nest to roost for the night.
    This is the moment I climbed over fence and grabbed the to huddled orphans placing them under her quickly..

    If tomorrow I continue to see her shun them pecking them I will take them out. I’m just not sure exactly the best way to care for them so they can go on their own. I will definitely do it, but of course this entire situation breaks my heart.

    I so appreciate the advice and guidance to help these orphans have a fighting chance at life...

    Debra
     
  5. Shezadandy

    Shezadandy Songster

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    Sep 26, 2015
    Portland OR
    You're doing a great job!

    How did things go today?

    It's said that broody hens can't count but I've had a couple where I really start to wonder. I've had hens steal chicks from other hens, I've had hens take new (rejected by their intended mom) chicks up to 2-3 weeks into raising their own brood, I've had a momma accept 3 week old chicks with her new hatchlings. And I've also had a hen pick her new babies up and fling them :mad: … or decide she's just not broody any more once the chicks hatch. :he (but the other mommas picked up the slack) Mostly it's happy experiences though.

    I'm sorry that the original momma and all those poor babies got eaten, but I'm SO glad it happened in your yard - otherwise the three orphans would surely have died.

    Let me know how it's going!
     

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