Putting chicks under broody hen?

Mintatheena

Chirping
Sep 18, 2014
45
5
89
Orlando
I have 2 hens that are displaying broody behavior, one is a white Ameraucana and the other is an itty bitty Serama with 3 little chicks that hatched 2 days ago. It so happens that my order of 3 day old chicks came in today. If I gave my serama a few of the chicks, would she "adopt" them? I don't want to leave them in there only for her to later kill them or refuse to sit on them. The ameracana is sitting in the box profusely brooding, even when all the eggs have been taken out for the day. She gets VERY upset when you mess with her, screaming her little lungs off, but she doesn't bite or attack. If she's removed from the box she jumps right back in it 5 minutes later, and if the coop door is closed she'll pace around and constantly check it. She's been doing this for about a week now and I'm wondering if it'd be safe to pop the babies under her? Does she need to go through the whole "21 days ontop of eggs" before she'll take care of them and walk around with them? This is my first time raising chicks the natural way, everytime before has been incubated and indoor brooded so any tips would be greatly appreciated!
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Nov 23, 2010
32,945
27,438
1,077
St. Louis, MO
She doesn't need to do 21 days.
I'd leave a couple eggs under her today and after dark put some under both of them. Check back 20 minutes later looking around the coop with a flashlight to make sure none have escaped the nest. I wouldn't disturb the hens after you insert the chicks though.
 

KelsT

Chirping
Apr 6, 2015
187
12
78
I was told to do just what you are wanting to do by 2 people. I haven't gotten a chance to do this yet but they said it works great and they would never go back to a brooder now.....

They said to wait until night time and slip the chicks in under the broody hen, she will think that she hatched them and take care of them. Can't seem to find the thread i had the replies on.

Let me know how it goes!
 

arad2586

In the Brooder
May 13, 2015
74
9
38
Hot Springs, AR
I was told to do just what you are wanting to do by 2 people. I haven't gotten a chance to do this yet but they said it works great and they would never go back to a brooder now.....

They said to wait until night time and slip the chicks in under the broody hen, she will think that she hatched them and take care of them. Can't seem to find the thread i had the replies on. 

Let me know how it goes!


This should work, I have seen my fiance's dad do this with some of his chickens and it has worked (some of his chickens leave the chicks to sit in more eggs almost right after they hatch out), the only problem is that sometimes the chicks won't follow the hen around like shes their mom if they were handled too much. Good luck to you!
 

Mintatheena

Chirping
Sep 18, 2014
45
5
89
Orlando
Welp! I tried it. She seemed confused! She didn't seem to act too motherly towards them, she just seemed to act very confused like "What are these things?"
lol.png
I guess out've all my hens, she does seem like the least hen like hen, she acts more like a roo! When she went broody I was pretty shocked, but I'm watching her closely. I didn't see them following her or eating with her so I decided it would be best to just keep them in the brooder. The other hens were very curious with them though, although one was TOO curious and pecked the baby lightly on the booty
 

Ol Grey Mare

One egg shy of a full carton. .....
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
20,622
15,037
821
Oregon
My Coop
My Coop
Welp! I tried it. She seemed confused! She didn't seem to act too motherly towards them, she just seemed to act very confused like "What are these things?"
lol.png
I guess out've all my hens, she does seem like the least hen like hen, she acts more like a roo! When she went broody I was pretty shocked, but I'm watching her closely. I didn't see them following her or eating with her so I decided it would be best to just keep them in the brooder. The other hens were very curious with them though, although one was TOO curious and pecked the baby lightly on the booty

How soon after you gave her the chicks was she out eating and walking around that you were not seeing them follow her? I ask because if she was up and about very soon after the chicks were presented it sounds like she was not truly deeply into broodiness, which would explain the failure.
 

Mintatheena

Chirping
Sep 18, 2014
45
5
89
Orlando
She stayed in the box for a little while, I'd say 20-30 minutes? She didn't seem to really be paying attention to them though. Just her usual broody sitting in a corner. She walked out pretty quickly without looking at them. When she came back to the box she sat back in her broody position, puffing up and screaming everytime I messed with her. She didnt seem to give a hoot about the chicks!
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom