Putting meat bird chicks under a broody hen

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by AhBee01, Aug 5, 2009.

  1. AhBee01

    AhBee01 Songster

    Nov 7, 2007
    yo. ohio
    Has anyone done it? We have 2 broody Buff Orpingtons and can order meat birds for Aug 17th. Do you think when the meaties come in I can pop them under the broodies? I read about it in Mother earth news. I'm so excited that I had 2 hens go broody!
    I just wanted some thoughts!
    I will be ordering from Myer hatchery. I live in Ohio, so they won't have to travel far! Thanks for your ideas,
  2. AhBee01

    AhBee01 Songster

    Nov 7, 2007
    yo. ohio
    Did I post in the right section?
  3. clarkestep

    clarkestep Songster

    May 20, 2008
    N Metro Atlanta
    Not sure about meat birds, but I've read where people have put day olds under a mama AT NIGHT, that's the important part, and it has worked out fine. You can try it.
  4. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Sure, you can try it, it will save you the trouble of keeping them warm under a brooder light until they feather out. I haven't had much success getting the hens to accept chicks they hadn't hatched themselves, but other folks have with their hens. Slip them in at night & watch them closely the next morning to be sure the hen will accept them by the light of day. It might work best if the broody hen has been setting on something, even golf balls, for close to 3 weeks before. And/or let her hatch some other chicks & add the meaties then.

    What breed of meaties are you ordering? Some, like the Cornish X, will grow at a rapid rate and may outgrow your hens' wings too soon. Also, I wonder about their remaining natural instincts, if they'll respond to a Mama hen when she clucks & scratches for them.

    I wish you success, let us know how it works out!
  5. AhBee01

    AhBee01 Songster

    Nov 7, 2007
    yo. ohio
    Thanks the hens are golf balls now! It has been a week since they started setting!
    So if the meaties are in on the 19th or so it will be close to 3 weeks! I will try it, and keep you posted.
    I think my hens will except them, since they all played musical nests this spring, and hatched out each others eggs! One was only broody a few days, and a chick hatched, momma was quite confused!
    Thanks again!

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