please HELP...adoppting chicks

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by farmerPEEPS, Mar 24, 2013.

  1. farmerPEEPS

    farmerPEEPS Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
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    so...we alrady have hens that are about a year + 3 months and i want to know A. how to make them broody?....B. if they are broody will they adopt new born chicks from the store?.....C. if so can i bring a broody hen to sit on the chicks in their cage or do i still need a heat lamp?....D. if not when is a good time to introduce new born chicks to a flock of hens???

    thanks..[​IMG]
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    The only good way I know of to make them go broody is own breeds that are likely to. It's early in the season, though, so any time in the next few months you could have one go broody for you.

    If you have a broody, then yes, you can slip day old chicks under her at night, just after dark, and she should accept them. I've done it a few times; it has worked every time I've tried it. The mama keeps them warm, takes them to food and water, protects them from other members of the flock -- she does it all, and no, she needs no heat lamp, she uses her body heat, which is plenty, even in cold weather. It was amazing to watch 3 day old chicks running around outdoors in 40 degree weather. Of course, they ran back under the mama every few minutes to get warm, but then they'd be right back out there. to me, this is by far the best way to introduce new chicks. Otherwise, you really need to raise them separately til they are adult size, and even then, integration is always a bit rough. When a mama raises chicks, they are already part of the flock when she decides not to be a mama any longer, even though they are not full size.

    If you have new chicks in the flock, you need to take the layer feed away and feed everyone another formula, like flock raiser, or just starter or grower. You can provide extra calcium by offering oyster shell separately, and the chicks won't bother it.
     
  3. cmoore333

    cmoore333 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just let my 8 week old free range for the first time today. I took the layer feed away and put out the starter food I had the baby chicks on, and they all started getting into the oyster shell??? What the heck?? I'm very confused they are way to young to need the oyster shells right??
     
  4. farmerPEEPS

    farmerPEEPS Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
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    thanks!.....so my hens sleep on a roost at night, do i remove the roost so they sleep in the nest boxes at night to be able to slip the babys under or what???
     
  5. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    If you have a hen that is truly broody, she will automatically prefer the nest over the roosting perch.

    And as to that other question about chicks messing with the oyster shell, that's all the little tykes are doing - messing around. They won't actually eat it.
     
  6. farmerPEEPS

    farmerPEEPS Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 22, 2012
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    3 of my hens are broody but they still sleep on their perches...
     

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