Our hen started sitting yesterday. Some rookie questions

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by fastrnrik, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. fastrnrik

    fastrnrik Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 13, 2012
    Sorry if these are dumb questions. I know next to nothing about chickens. I only got these golden phoenix chickens because they came with some ducks I bought LOL. These chickens have a kind of a sweet setup, They free range around our big equipment barn all day and roost in the rafters. We enjoy watching them and they enjoy messing up our landscaping. What a life LOL A few days ago, I discovered that she had made a nest out of an old white towel on the counter in a tool room. She had about 10 eggs in there on Monday, and yesterday she started sitting on them. I was going to move her because we are in and out of this room, but I thought moving her would stress her out so I just left her. She doesn't seem to mind us or pay us any attention. It's a good spot and safe so I guess it will be fine. I put food & water in there for her, because I don't know how often thhey get up? Is there anything else I need to do for her? I'm sure nature will kind of handle it, but I just wanted to check. By my math, 21 days means we will have babies on Nov 7. This kind of leads to my next questions. Do I need to do anything for the babies or will she take care of them? I didn't know if I needed to take them away and do something specific? If they can stay with mom, and since she free ranges, I may put her in a pen with the babies so nothing happens to them until I can get rid of them. Again, sorry for the newbie questions, just trying to learn
     
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    First of all, these are not dumb questions! You want to take good care of your hen and her babies and that's good!
    You don't have to do anything for her except provide food and water for when she needs some. For the chicks, when they hatch you should get some chick starter, medicated or not, you decide. Mom can eat the chick starter as well, but the chicks must not eat layer food, it's bad for them.
    Putting her in a special pen with the chicks is a good idea. I used to have a predator problem where we lived that we were blissfully unaware of until we got chicks! Then hens were safe, but the chicks got taken one by one :-(
    Mom will take care of her chicks until they are around 7 weeks old, then she should wean them. Please note: should. I've had hens go on a bit longer!
     
  3. fastrnrik

    fastrnrik Out Of The Brooder

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    Ok, thank you very much for the info. Exactly what I needed. I say we will get rid of the babies, but once my little boy sees them, I'm sure we will end up keeping a few haha. Thanks again.
     
  4. what did I do

    what did I do Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just check'n', do you have a rooster?

    Broody chickens poop big smelly poop - just a fact

    I hope all goes well for you. Make sure you don't keep all roosters.
     
  5. fastrnrik

    fastrnrik Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes, we have her boyfriend, a golden phoenix rooster. We also have a mille fleur rooster and two mille fleur hens, but they stay in a seperate area and don't mix. Occasionally the phoenix rooster goes looking for, and whips up on the little bantam rooster, but not very often. The girl sitting now is the only one who ever gets broody. She's started to lay eggs on the ground a couple different times, but our resident basset hound LOVES eggs...... LOL, so she got smart I guess and moved up high. I've never even seen the bantam hens lay eggs, which is fine. We just enjoy watching them, we don't care about breeding them. I honestly don't want to keep ANY of the babies.
     
  6. what did I do

    what did I do Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Raising chicks under a broody is so easy. About 2 weeks after our broody hatched 3 chicks it turned cold, in the 20ies. The chicks are doing just fine. Our broody is molting now but all is well.

    It doesn't sound like you eat your eggs. If you want to eat some of the eggs put some nesting boxes up and just collect the eggs layed in the boxes. I feed the eggs laid out and about back to the chickens.
     
  7. fastrnrik

    fastrnrik Out Of The Brooder

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    Sounds good. I kind of figured she would take care of her babies, but I just wanted to check. No, I don't eat the eggs. They're really just pets that we enjoy watching. Besides, her eggs are pretty small. I can only imagine how small the bantam eggs would be- like those easter egg gumballs LOL. Thanks again.
     

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