New surrogate mom.. need advice

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by sdaikus, Mar 30, 2018.

  1. sdaikus

    sdaikus Chirping

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    Hello everyone!

    So I have a silkie who has been broody for a while now. I tried a frozen water bottle, picking her up out of the box frequently and putting her in a wire cage, elevated for days! She always goes back to the nesting box. I tried taking eggs away right away and she will still sit on nothing! I’ve given in to her will to be a mom and bought her three baby chicks. I was well aware that she may not accept them and I would just raise them indoors... no big deal. Well... she INSTANTLY took to them. She is sitting on them and doesn’t seem to be aggressive at all.

    They are in a coop outside.. it’s about 35-40 at night and 40-50 right now during the day here. I have 3 other larger chickens in there with them. Right now I have the nesting box blocked off until I get advise. I have never done this before and need any tips, how to’s and what not to do’s you all have!

    My outside coop is decent sized.. I can stand in it, but the door to get out is too high for the baby chicks to get out.

    Thank you all for any advise!
     
  2. Ohmyheart

    Ohmyheart Songster

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    Silkies are awesome moms. I have a silkie and a cochin sitting on eggs that I bought for them. I put a gate of sorts to keep the other hens away from them.

    The last batch worked out really well that way. I put 6 babies under my broody OEGH she took to them right away too. mom didn't let them go past the gate. After a few the chicks slowly wandered around the corner of the gate but if any other hen came in ran back to mom.

    She then allowed them to wander a bit inside the coop until they were a bit older. My coop is 4 feet off the ground. So I worried a lot about chicks falling out. So I closed the pop door when I knew the other girls were done laying. That way they could run around with no issues. When mom started trying to get them to come out. I put a clear Rubbermaid bucket upside down on top of some bricks to make a safe zone for the chicks if they got too far from mom. The big chicks couldn't get them but mom being so small (Old English Game Hen) could slip under it too. I did make sure the babies new where the bucket was by starting them under it. I also place the lid up against the run walls to make additional hiding places if they needed one. It was so much easier leaving mom do all the integration then me having to do it.
     
    sdaikus, ChickenCowboy02 and azygous like this.
  3. sdaikus

    sdaikus Chirping

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    Awesome! Thank you so much.. all great ideas!
     
    Ohmyheart likes this.
  4. Ohmyheart

    Ohmyheart Songster

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    North Little Rock, AR
    You're Welcome
     
  5. sdaikus

    sdaikus Chirping

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    Everything seems to be going well! It’s cold so babies mostly spend time under Mom.. the only issue I’m having is Mom keeps eating their starter feed instead of her layer feed.. is this ok?
     
  6. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Free Ranging

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    yes,, in fact she doesn't need layer feed until the chicks are"weaned" in a few weeks.. starter is OK for her until then.
     
  7. sdaikus

    sdaikus Chirping

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    Thanks!
     

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