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newcomer question!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by cmwhite23, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. cmwhite23

    cmwhite23 In the Brooder

    Jul 19, 2011
    Hello! I've just recently joined in hopes of getting advice on my new flock of 7 hens and 2 roos! I want to begin hatching eggs soon using a hen. I've read tons of posts and info on how to begin the process and what to look for when deciding if a hen is broody. I still don't know what to do once the chicks are hatched. Will the mother keep them warm or should I install a heat lamp? Will my other chickens hurt the little ones? I have so many questions any advice on the whole process would be great!

  2. Cadjien_De_Louisiane

    Cadjien_De_Louisiane SWLA Gamefowl Breeder

    Apr 18, 2011
    Welsh, LA
    Make a brooder, most people use plastic storage bin or big cardboard box, layer the bottom with Pine shavings (not cedar). Pick up a water and feeder from TSC or local feed store and some chick starter feed. 250w heat lamp (red bulb). After they hatch wether with broody hen or incubator after they dry put them in the brooder keeping them 95 degrees and 5 degrees less every week. I prefer to put the lamp to one side they they can choose to go under lamp if there cold or away from lamp if there hot.
  3. Cadjien_De_Louisiane

    Cadjien_De_Louisiane SWLA Gamefowl Breeder

    Apr 18, 2011
    Welsh, LA
    Quote:If there huddled up there cold if there running around all over there usually happy! [​IMG]
  4. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    I agree with the other post. There is no guarantee your girls will go broody but it is a good plan. You only need one boy to service your 7 girls. Two boys together may fight and may not. Mine did so I had to separate them and give them each some girls. A broody will take good care of the chicks usually. A broody will want to sit in a nest box day and night. If you kick her out she will get back in as soon as she can. If your birds are young sometimes they aren't broody but just like to rest in the nest boxes. If the potential broody is sitting on eggs then she may well be an actual broody. I have had some fakers and when I look under them there are no eggs. If you do let a broody raise the chicks have a safe place for them. The other birds may or may not go after the chicks. All birds are different and what may work with one person may not with another. Good luck and have fun!!!
  5. ChestnutRidge

    ChestnutRidge Songster

    Feb 26, 2011
    Western Virginia
    [​IMG] and I recommend reading this page: http://poultrykeeper.com/chickens/incubation-and-hatching/incubation-using-a-broody-hen.html
    should answer most of your questions.

    Many people use a broody hen to both incubate/hatch and brood the chicks. This means that you leave the chicks with the hen, and like cmom said, make sure that she and the chicks are separated from the rest of the flock. Using something like a chicken tractor (you can do a search on BYC forum to see what that is if you are unsure) would give the mother hen and her chicks a place to sleep and a small run. She can teach the chicks to eat, drink, scratch, and so on. They will go underneath her to warm themselves, just as when she kept the eggs warm during incubation. If you take her chicks away from a good broody, she may become depressed. I would only take them away if she was not a good mother: pecking, squashing, and so on. But we'll see what everyone else says!

    In the meantime, try the link above. Good luck! [​IMG]

    ETA: There is also a "long and informational thread" about hatching with a broody in this "incubating and hatching eggs" section of the forum. I'd read that as well!
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2011

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