Reintroducing broody mom and chick to flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by sherg, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. sherg

    sherg Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 31, 2013
    My broody BO hen successfully hatched a chick one month ago. We had separated her with three eggs in a brooder pen, visible but secure from the flock, and one egg never hatched, one died shortly after hatching, and one lived. They have been doing great, but she has been pacing and seems to want to go back to the flock (25 hens). They are only 7 months old, but when we have let her and her chick in, she did ok at first, when the roosters were in, except the roosters wanted to breed with her, but now she gets paranoid and the hens start attacking her and the chick. We put her back in the brooder pen, and she paces again. We have 3 incubator hatched chicks that are 5 days old, and 40 eggs in the incubator set to hatch in the next couple weeks in staggered hatches. We have 4 roosters that we just separated since we didn't have room for more chicks, but the hens seem to be more aggressive toward the hen and chick since we took out the roosters (one was too rough on the BA hens and was tearing up their heads, so we gave the girls a break). We are thinking that we might be in for a bigger challenge, and don't know what to do. Could anyone help me?
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    A broody doesn't usually continue to mother chicks more than a couple of months. If you let her raise the chicks in with the flock, when she desices to quit, the chick will already be accepted. At this point you'll probably just have to let them work out the pecking order and hope it doesn't get too bad. If you can identify a lead "bully," separate her for a week then reutrn her, and she will return at the bottom of the pecking order. The chicks that are about to hatch need to be full size for the best chance at a safe integration. I would cut back to either one or two roosters. It's hard to say whether the flock will be more peaceful with or without a rooster present; it can go either way. Good luck!
     
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  3. sherg

    sherg Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 31, 2013
    Thanks so much! We have a second first time broody hen that rejected her chick today from someone elses egg she hatched. Is it ok to put the chick in with 3 one week old chicks, even if they peck at it? It has already been kicked out of the nest, and these are incubator chicks. We do have about 15 or so due to hatch in the next few days. Should we wait and put them all in together to avoid ganging up on the new ones? Or do they need to be raised separately?
     
  4. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    The rule of thumb I've read here a number of times is that you can put chicks of different ages together, as long as they are all under a month old. As with most things chicken, I'd supervise, but I'd try it.
     
  5. sherg

    sherg Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 31, 2013
    Thank you so much! I will do that!
     

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