OK to hatch via live chicken?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by exop, May 12, 2011.

  1. exop

    exop Chillin' With My Peeps

    467
    19
    146
    Jan 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    Hi all,

    I've never had turkeys, though I have been thinking offhandedly about trying some in order to have something to show in an historical exhibit this fall.

    I have two super broody hens (chicken hens) of fair size. Would it work out using them as mothers... Has anyone tried this?

    Oh and um... is there anything else which a turkey novice should know, before jumping into this sort of project? [​IMG]

    Best - exop
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2011
  2. BeccaOH

    BeccaOH Morning Gem Farm

    Oct 3, 2008
    east central Ohio
    I'm no expert. I bought my first turkey poults on a whim when I first visited Meyer Hatchery in 2009, and they had some extra Bourbon Reds and Blue Slates. [​IMG] I loved my BR flock but sold them due to space issues. Now I'm incubating Midget White eggs from Sands Poultry and working on a new turkey setup for the future.

    The pictured bird looks decent to me. [​IMG]

    Turkey eggs will take 28 days to hatch. A chicken hen is wired for 21 days, but she may stick with them if she feels the movement of a developing poult inside the egg. I haven't tried that. And turkey eggs are about twice as big as the average LF chicken so I'm not sure how many your chicken can manage.

    Study all you can on turkeys in the meantime. Poults can sometimes be delicate to get started after hatch. You have to be sure they are eating and drinking. I brooded mine with chicks that helped to teach the poults what to do.

    Good luck.
     
  3. exop

    exop Chillin' With My Peeps

    467
    19
    146
    Jan 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    I've had hens sit and try to "incubate" things for upwards of 50 days, so I'm not too worried about nest desertion.

    Are there language issues when a chicken socializes a turkey poult? My broody hen mothers all make that "tut tut, tut tut!" Good food! Look, I'm eating! noise to encourage their chicks to try food... how does a poult react to this sort of thing?
     
  4. jimmythechicken

    jimmythechicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 8, 2010
    mansfield
    if i was you i would have the hen hatch them an then take most of them in to brooder them.i would leave her like 2 so she doesn't go broody right away.turkey pullets dont have immune systems like chicken an can get sick very easy on the ground.it is totally your chose she will raise them if you let her.she will show them how to eat an drink an stuff.also turkeys need a higher protien then chicks the turkey pullets should be on 28% gamebird turkey starter.good luck you will love turkeys my daughter fell in love with blue slates last year they are alot of fun an great personalitys.
     
  5. cashela

    cashela Chillin' With My Peeps

    312
    3
    131
    Mar 4, 2009
    South Eastern NH
    I have a bantam silver laced wyandotte sitting on 5 turkey eggs right now. I don't know if they are fertile or not, this weekend will be 28 days. She is doing a great job of keeping them warm. I originally stuck 4 under her but I noticed last night that she stole another one from my turkey and is sitting on that one too. I don't know how she is managing to keep them all covered but she is!
     
  6. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    delete
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2011
  7. exop

    exop Chillin' With My Peeps

    467
    19
    146
    Jan 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    Are they really that fragile as poults? Chicken hens seem willing to coddle cold babies whenever they are unhappy, I hoped this natural heat source would work just as well for a turkey poult.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2011
  8. cashela

    cashela Chillin' With My Peeps

    312
    3
    131
    Mar 4, 2009
    South Eastern NH
    Good to know about the turning, I never knew that, that must be why the nest moves down a few inches from where it is every couple of days? It started in the middle of the wall of the coop and is now in a corner.
     
  9. exop

    exop Chillin' With My Peeps

    467
    19
    146
    Jan 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    Quote:Thanks for the tip, Steve! I wouldn't have thought of this either! [​IMG]
     
  10. exop

    exop Chillin' With My Peeps

    467
    19
    146
    Jan 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    Has anyone else tried raising non-chicken babies using a chicken?
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2011

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by