separating a hen from chicks-now she's screeching 24/7 -help?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mudpaw, May 13, 2010.

  1. mudpaw

    mudpaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've just recently separated a hen from her fostered chicks and now she is roaming the yard screaming! I know she is just calling the chicks, but it's LOUD and VERY irritating (no doubt to my neighbors as well). They are 5 weeks old now and I want to try to get them used to human contact before they get much older (not to mention she kept leading them out into the yard and the other hens were trying to kill them....seriously-one little cockerel was picked up and thrown a few times-The mama hen does NOT defend them). It has been three days now and she still is just screeching for 30 mins at a time repeatedly all day long. Is there any way I can break her of it or will she eventually just give up?
     
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    How sad. [​IMG] She misses them.

    Could you maybe remove her and the babies to another location? A separate area, to protect the babies, but still let her raise them?
     
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    She's only following her instincts. Her job is to care for her chicks until the hormones kick in and she starts laying again. You have interrupted that process. Her reaction is only normal chicken behavior. Yes she will get over it. Eventually.
     
  4. mudpaw

    mudpaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know I sound so evil, and I do feel bad about it....but I have a small city yard and only one run/coop (which takes up a large spot in the yard as it is). She and her chicks were living in my playhouse/garden shed but I can't seem to keep her confined in there (she is some kind of Houdini) I also have a silkie hen in there with her chicks, which have now been repeatedly attacked (sort of-more of a chase and peck) when the screaming hen slips out of her own pen. I also don't want her super flighty behavior to rub off on her foster babies(she has flown over a 6' fence multiple times just because I walked by her-about 3' away). I may try and set up some sort of wood-roofed pen within the run tomorrow if she still seems as upset. The whole situation is probably being made worse by the fact that all then hens are after her too(I guess she was out of sight for just long enough they assume she is stranger now). [​IMG] drama hen divas *sigh*
     

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