Now I know why broody is BAD!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by chickenpiedpiper, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. chickenpiedpiper

    chickenpiedpiper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2008
    New Durham NH
    And I thought it was so cute when she went broody, we stuffed some eggs under her, and and after over 30 days, we got a new years hatch of one. Then after frantic search we got a few eggs due to hatch the next day, and stuffed them under her too, now we have 3 chicks, and we are soo happy,

    EXCEPT.... I didnt realize what a god awful mess this hen is going to make in this cage here in the house..... I cant live this way!! She scratches up the papers, flings the shavings and hay all over the place, poops these unholy huge poops after each paper change, so I cant seem to get rid of the smell. There is dust on my desk, keyboard, phone, printer, everywhere!! AAAaaacccckkkk!

    Now I understand, why we raise the chicks, and leave the mommies out of it!! I have determined that after all this, she has got to go. So, My question is this, since I am going to seperate mommie from chicks, and I know everybody is gonna pitch a fit, how and when is best. Do I take her out to the coop at night? If I do it in the morning, she will freak all day. I tossed her outside yesterday for 5 minutes so I could clean, and she was flinging herself at the door. But she has got to go, I wont let this happen again, now I understand the incubators... Sheesh!
  2. KellyHM

    KellyHM Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    Can't you just section off a little part of the coop for her and the babies and kick all of them out? You could even hang a heat lamp if you thought they needed it, but mommy keeps them warm pretty well. I had day-old chicks when it was in the 20's here and my broody kept them heat lamp or anything.
  3. PortageGirl

    PortageGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    In the house? Err, YIKES, in the warm weather mom just does it all outside, in the coop, with the others, seperate if you have room, but normally mom just deals with it. She protects the chicks from the other hens, might be a big problem if it's crowded, but we had tons of room. I don't think we ever lost a single one to the other hens beating them up. Mother Hens are darn protective!

    One time we had a very early clutch out there while too chilly to get outside which would have been darn crowded. We made a 'pen' for mom and babies, inside the coop and they just stayed there. After a few days, babies needed food, so we put their food in an inverted wooden box with a chunk cut out of the top, (for a light bulb), there were slats so they could see out and it didn't get too hot and they had food and water of their own. Mom has food and water in the other area, (make sure it's up high so chicks don't drown in it) Oh, cut a 'mouse hole' so they could get - in and out- but hen can't, they learn pretty quick about that food thing!

    did that make sense?

    because they were born out there, and had a warm place to go, they all lived just fine... now, this was early spring, not the dead of winter.

    I'm building a new coop and will have room for a 'brooder' area, for both new chicks (after they get older - not sticking day olds out there! hehe ) or for a mom to raise a clutch right from day one. I know that might sound odd to some, but it's what we've always done, and we never had any horror stories!
  4. chickenpiedpiper

    chickenpiedpiper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2008
    New Durham NH
    We have a small coop, and in this nasty weather all of the birds opt to stay indoors, and move the shavings around. Our perches boxes and roosts are all over head, and this hen chose to make her nest up on the second highest, and I would be afraid for the chicks, cause she is a little japanese, and most of our birds are bigger, and they are aggresive mousers and chipmunkers....I would live in fear.

    I could just see them chasing around and killing the new babies.

    Our coop is only heated to 40* at waist hieght, on really cold nights, the water can ice over, and if the hen couldnt get up to the roosts to stay warm, she would freeze sitting on the floor trying to keep the puddins warm! I just dont see how I could do this with our current lay out.... May be when I build my next coop, I will make a brooder area, But for now I just cant see a solution that lets them all stay together! I wish I had just taken the chicks away as they hatched, but I thought it would be cute to let her raise them, she is/was one of our lap chickens.... not so much right now![​IMG]

    Do you think she will freak for long? one day? two! Oh god, what have I started!
  5. Sallysitter

    Sallysitter Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 3, 2009
    Victoria, Australia
    I take the babies from their mums just after they have hatched and raise them myself in a brooder box inside with lights. I clean it out just about every day only takes 5 minutes. Mothers go into a debrooder shed and are looked after very well to gain their strength back for 5 days then put back with the main flock.
  6. Teresaann24

    Teresaann24 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 29, 2008
    Eastern, Kentucky
    My hen hatch out one chick in november and she has been caring for it OUTSIDE in a sperate pen all by herself. Now the chick did get frost bite on its toes but is better now. This only happened because the silly hen kicked all of the hay out from under her and the poor sole slept on that cold ground all night in frezzing rain but so far she has done a good job by herself I kept them inside for 2 days in a pet taxi and the smell was too much out they went.
  7. chickenpiedpiper

    chickenpiedpiper Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2008
    New Durham NH
    Quote:This hen has been with the chicks for a little over a week now, how long do yu think she will freak for? I havent had the heart to seperate them yet..... I just love to watch thier interactions, and she is being such a good mommy. Fortunately, she is a tiny little thing, and the cage is pretty big... But, the morning smell is awful!
  8. PortageGirl

    PortageGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    They have -really- short memories... pretty sure it's not a big problem. Motherly sorts usually like most or even all chicks, but don't recognize their own after just a couple days.

    ... I was going to make a snide comment using the term 'bird brain' but that's really not fair, they are what they are. Designed to be that way for a reason I guess.
  9. birdlover

    birdlover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Hi. I'm assuming you don't have a basement or garage you could move the cage to? Is there any way you could set the cage up outdoors right next to your door? I am envisioning a table of some sort with the cage on top. Cover the sides of the cage with 1/2" hardware cloth to keep predators from reaching through the bars. Provide a little house in the cage for them to sleep in like a rubbermaid tote with a door cut into the side. Cover the top of the cage with a tarp and cover the entire cage at night. If you have the cage next to the house, you might be able to rig up some sort of a heat lamp for them. This is probably what I would do in lieu of taking the babies from her. I'm sure she'll get over it eventually but, after having them for over a week, it seems awfully drastic to take them from her, not to mention the chicks being separated from mom. I would do everything in my power to keep them together and just chalk it up to experience for in the future. And thank you for posting this as others will also be forewarned! Good luck!!!
  10. Msbear

    Msbear Fancy Banties

    May 8, 2008
    Sharpsburg, MD.
    First of all, don't blame it on the broody. [​IMG] You're the one that brought that mess inside. If they had a warm place to hang, they'd all be fine outside. A nice broody rearing babies and saving my laundry room from poopy smell, heat lamp boxes, cocci and introducing my babies back into the flock is much appreciated. I just wish you could turn them on and off like a bator [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2009

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