Sertogate mom, week old poults?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by rssnbabybear, May 7, 2016.

  1. rssnbabybear

    rssnbabybear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a hen sitting on a clutch. I had eggs in the bator that hatched this week. I expect the other eggs to hatch middle of next week. Can I still try to put the bator poults out in the coup with the hen?
     
  2. ShannonR

    ShannonR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You could try... that one could go both ways.
    In my experience though, turkey mamas are stupider and therefore more willing to accept poults that aren't hers than say a chicken hen. Try it but keep a close eye out and just see for yourself how they do
     
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  3. Jrose

    Jrose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My hens love babies and would adopt any of them; IF the babies didn't think she was a monster!

    I've tried many times to introduce chicks 4, 5, 10, 20 days old to broodies. The broodies do their best, but the chicks are afraid of her, run away, and usually die if I don't intervene. Locking them up usually doesn't work because they're so freaked out and won't go near the mama who's just trying to feed them...

    That's just been my experience.
     
  4. rssnbabybear

    rssnbabybear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had been thinking that I might take them outside just long enough to start to get chilly. Then when i put them under her, they know where the heat is and will think she is okay. Also I was going to try at night so that they spend the night under her and wake up in the morning and don't know any differecet. Do you think that will help? I've heard turkeys are pretty stupid so I was hoping this would play to my advantage.
     
  5. Jrose

    Jrose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's a toss-up. If it were my own birds, I doubt it would work. Babes need to imprint early. And it might upset mama off the nest. My turkey hens get very attached to their babes. One hens did a February hatch of her own eggs this year; sold all but 4 and wanted to let her raise them- however it was just too cold. Every night I'd find them half-froze somewhere in the coop, mama calling to them to come back to the nest. One babe got separated too long and died So I took them away. The next morning that hen tore apart all of the nest boxes; just gutted em, calling for chicks. She promptly went brood y again.

    If we're talking 4-6 days and I HAD to choose how to do what you're trying to do; I would put the babes with mama now and pen her in a small flat space. Turkey poults are slow to leave the nest since eggs from a natural clutch may have a few days difference in hatch time. If she DOES want to get up with her poults, she can't go far. I'm talking put the food and water within reach of her, so she can feed and water herself and the babes without leaving the nest.
    I've found that if there are still eggs on the ground, my broody turkey hens WILL NOT leave to take care of chicks. They will absolutely not leave unhatched eggs on the nest.

    I hope that makes sense? In summary; I'd give them to her now, put food and water right in the nest with her, and monitor. If she's a good mama she'll feed the hatchlings and keep sitting eggs. If she's a good mama and does decide to get up for short periods of time with the poults, she should cover her eggs with feathers/nesting to keep them warm.
     
  6. rssnbabybear

    rssnbabybear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks
    for the tips. I will give It a try tonight.
     
  7. OzarkCountryGirl

    OzarkCountryGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a black sex link hen go broody and we didn't have any fertile eggs at the time. She refused to leave the nest even after six weeks and I was afraid she would die. I tried to find day old chicks, but to no avail. However I did find some 10 day old incubator-hatched chicks, already starting to feather out. I got the chicks, kept them in a brooder box until almost 10 pm that night and slipped them under her. The hen immediately settled them all in under her, and as I was removing my hand from putting the last one under her, she attacked me, leaving a huge purple bruise on my wrist. The next morning she and "her" chicks were as if she had hatched them out herself so I let them out in the yard and they stayed close by, running to her whenever she called. So if you are having problems with the chicks being afraid of a new mom, give the night introduction a go.
     
  8. rssnbabybear

    rssnbabybear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you SOoo much for the encouragement. Update here is: my hen had 8 viable eggs and through various methods of her being a bad mom they all died. Most of them she crushed, two hatched and I found them out from under her a few feet, two eggs she pushed out as soon as they started zipping the shells and they got cold. But she will NOT come off the nest. No matter how many times I've moved her or pulled her out of the nest box in the last couple of days. I had resigned her fate the freezer the next chance I get, but perhaps I will make the attempt to put the 'bator babies out there and see if she can redeem herself. Thanks again!
     
  9. rssnbabybear

    rssnbabybear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, I put the poults out there at night and they stayed under and she didn't kill them. I was gone all day and when I came home it looked like none of them had moved. She got a little sassy with me when I tried to check on them so I'm pretty sure she wants to keep them. I wonder if she kept those babies in the nest box all day. What are the odds that she will still refuse to come out of the nest box even though she has babies now?
     
  10. ShannonR

    ShannonR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    All of the eggs are out from under her, or is she still sitting on eggs?

    If unhatched eggs are under her I sure wouldn't trust her to take care of them.
     

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