Separating mom hen from chicks

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Momhen, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. Momhen

    Momhen Out Of The Brooder

    67
    0
    39
    Aug 5, 2011
    I have 4 nine week old Barnevelder Bantam chicks (2 cockerels, 2 hens) and 3 adults (1 cockerel, 2 hens- 1 of which is "mom" hen) we hatched the chicks ourselves (well our hen did [​IMG]). I'm at the point of separating the mother from the chicks and reintegrating her back in with the other adults.

    "Mom" hen (Emma) had been with the other 2 adults previous to the chicks arrival. I put the 2nd hen (Maxine) in with Emma and her chicks in a large chicken run a few times just to get them used to each other again. Other than keeping clear of each other and a few pecks from Maxine to the chicks, there were no problems. Now tho, I think it's time to reintegrate Emma back with the other adults. I put her in with them for a few hours during the day a couple of times with no real problems. For the past 2 days I have her in with them all the time and they seem okay together. The chicks are in a coop/run on their own and the adults are in the main chicken run.

    My questions are:
    1. Should I bring Emma back with the chicks for part of the day or at night to roost with them or is a clear separation better?
    2. Eventually I want to integrate the chicks into the main flock. Would this be easier done if I kept Emma with her chicks and then integrated them all at the same time?
    3. Would I be better to keep the adult cockerel on it's own and integrate Maxine with Emma and her chicks and then when the chicks are old enough, reintroduce the adult cockerel & remove the 2 chick cockerels.

    There seem to be so many options but I'm sure there is only 1 that is best suited for the flock.
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

    8,828
    3,831
    441
    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    If you're planning on integrating the chicks anyway, I would put the chicks in with the mama - that way she can protect them from the other chickens. I'd also leave the rooster in with them. I think he'd be fine with the two young ones. They'd have to go eventually anyway, because of the ratio, but for now they should all be fine.
     
  3. Momhen

    Momhen Out Of The Brooder

    67
    0
    39
    Aug 5, 2011
    The chicks are only about 9 weeks old, could I go ahead and put them in with the adults now or should I wait until they are 16 weeks? Also, could I put the 2 cockerel chicks in with the adult cockerel now, along with the mother hen?
     
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    17,883
    2,531
    466
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Method chosen should minimize handling. Hen can be placed in with other adults and left. Since groups are confined, keep juveniles separated from balance of flock until they become young adults. Generally speaking, rooster is less of threat to chicks than hens which are not the mother.
     
  5. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    28,907
    119
    408
    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Quote:Agreed. Every chick that's been hatched on this farm has been hatched in the coop, with the other chickens and the roosters. They slip right into the pecking order where they belong without a hitch.
     
  6. vnploveschickens

    vnploveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Agreed. Every chick that's been hatched on this farm has been hatched in the coop, with the other chickens and the roosters. They slip right into the pecking order where they belong without a hitch.

    I have chicks that are hatched by broody in the coop with all the other chickens, or hatched in an incubator, and put under the broody (at night).

    All the chicks were raised in the coop. The mama hens take good care of the chickies.

    I'd put the mama hen & chicks into the coop, at night, and keep a good eye on all of them the next day or so.

    Good Luck!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by