Raising chicks?

Lisa Haigler

In the Brooder
6 Years
Sep 3, 2013
Question - I had one broody - she was on 6 eggs and two hatched out a week ago - one - is no longer (not sure what got it :( ) So we only have one now - so I got 3 more yesterday thought I wold try to sneek them under the hen tonight and see if she will take them? Not sure this is a good idea or not? Also was told to only leave chicks with the broody for a couple to 3 weeks then take them away and raise them myself - pros and cons??? if I leave them with her - can I turn them all out with the rest of my free range chickens or would it be best to keep them alone? And if I do keep them with their momma - how long til I can turn them out with the group? Thanks in advance! :)
My friend had a broody hen. That night as she was asleep on her eggs, my friend popped under neath her 2 chicks and took the eggs from under her. Since then that hen has raised those chicks as her own ^.^
Since your hen hatched a week ago, I think you've missed your window for adding more chicks. By now she knows who her babies are and isn't likely to accept other chicks. You can always try, but personally I wouldn't. If you do, be ready to pull those babies out if she attacks them.

Why would you take the chicks at 3 weeks? Momma's doing a fine job, let her keep them. I've never heard that, it's just weird.

I like to leave my broodies in the flock and let them raise the chicks as members of the flock. Especially if you're free ranging, the chicks have plenty of space to get away from a cranky older hen. I'd put momma and chick back with the flock asap.
Well I put the babies in with the momma - she took them as her own right away - Thank goodness - now you raise another question....lol I have them in a pen so they are not with the flock of free range chickens and our 3 ducks lol, but you say to let her out to be with the flock? If I do that how to I make sure they are getting enought food and the other chickens are not the ones eating the food? The flock are at the pen numerous times during the day - pecking with the momma and babies.
Since your chickens free range, those chicks probably won’t eat much chicken feed anyway. Mama will keep them out foraging most of the time. You don’t have to micromanage their food if they have decent forage. They’ll take care of that.

The big advantage to me with letting Mama raise them with the flock is that Mama takes care of integration. When she weans them they still have to manage their own pecking order stuff, but that won’t be until they mature enough to force their way into the pecking order. In the meantime they will just avoid the older chickens.

If Mama raises them with the flock, they learn to be chickens. Donrae, that’s a disadvantage to some people. The chicks are going to be harder to tame because Mama will teach them to be afraid of big monsters like us. It’s weird to me too but some people want their chickens to set on their shoulder where they can easily peck their eyes or poop on them. I prefer to wash my hair once a day, but that’s just personal preference. I realize I don’t fit in with everyone on this forum.

Seriously Lisa, that’s one reason some people might separate them, to train them to be cuddly pets, but them they have to eventually be integrated into the flock without Mama’s protection. We all have our different goals.

Another reason might be that they don’t have enough room for Mama to raise them with the flock. The tighter you shoehorn chickens into the coop and run, the harder it is for Mama to raise them. Of course, if space is that tight it will be really hard to integrate them later. We all have our different set-ups and conditions.

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom