So at what age does the mama chicken chase off the babies?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by sred98, Nov 18, 2009.

  1. sred98

    sred98 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2008
    Oklahoma
    Do they always stay together? When is the baby "Self-sufficient"?

    My mama chicken disappeared yesterday, along with a guinea. Middle of the day, and I ran into town for a quick errand and took my Boston Terrier with me. She is the ultimate livestock protector. No trace of either, so I am thinking fox or coyote. The one baby chick she raised survived, and it is about 6 weeks old. Ruby (the dog) is now forbidden from leaving the farm because the predators are out during the day.

    The baby has now started clinging to me. I made her sleep in the barn with the other chickens last night, but first thing she ran to me and wants inside my shirt. She's old enough to fly up and roost, and has all her feathers. I feel really bad for her, but isn't she old enough to hang out with the other juveniles now? They are about her age.

    Thanks,

    Shelly
     
  2. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    After they are 18 years old, out of school, sitting around playing video games, eating her out of house and home and not looking for a job.
    That's when the momma kids them out.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2009
  3. Sooner

    Sooner My kids Mom!

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    Mar 22, 2009
    Oklahoma
    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    That was good.

    My hen didn't stay with her babies much longer but there were two for company. After several weeks one didn't make it an the other thinks its a silkie (it stays in the silkie pen)
     
  4. Amethyste

    Amethyste For Love of Boo...

    My babies are 17 weeks old this week...and still being treated like they are babies. Cuddling under Momma and the whole bit! She seems to be happy tho...so...I guess its all good [​IMG]
     
  5. Bookworm chick

    Bookworm chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 27, 2009
    Salem County, NJ
    Mine are just over 12 weeks old. During the day they kind of hang together and sometimes run to the mama if one of the flock pecks them. They usually still follow mama into the coop when she goes in to eat or drink. However, at nighttime, only one is still huddling under mama. The other three have chosen to roost together up high on the frame over the door. They're bantams so have no trouble flying! The mama doesn't mind but I've noticed that she isn't nowhere near as aggressive when one of the flock goes after one of her younguns. They're about the same size as the adults now so I guess she figures it's time they fought their own battles.
    One of the bolder chicks is now trying to climb up in the pecking order. She's chasing one of last year's pullets every chance she gets. This poor pullet (Berta) had already been chased around by one of the young cockerels until I decided they had to go. So, she's kind of skittish now. Actually, Berta isn't even the lowest in the pecking order of the original flock. With the four new tweens I guess the pecking order is going to be rearranged.
     
  6. flakey chick

    flakey chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 3, 2007
    Florida
    My mama started to chase her babies away at 3 weeks. It was a bit unusual as she clearly favored one over the other, and I'm not sure why. The one she favored was a roo so it had to go, but the other has done ok joining the flock. I did have to put up a sanctuary where the little ones could safely get away and still have food and water.
     
  7. Good question. I think it does depend on the hen. I keep my baby girls in the nursery until they are about 10 weeks.

    I have found that putting them in with the big chickens in the barn gets them in real trouble.

    The roosters will try to mate them and if they are not big enough or can not deter the boys they can kill them.

    I would isolate your baby until if it is a hen and you have roosters. My wild momma hen is still bringing her babies back to the "little house" after a day of free range. She is VERY protective of her babies and they are getting to be a "hand full" now.

    Baby chicks love to stay with their moms and they will do so as long as mom tolerates them.
     
  8. sred98

    sred98 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2008
    Oklahoma
    Well, I found the momma. [​IMG] I had gone up to the neighbor's house to complain that I missed when I shot at their dog. [​IMG] And if he came back, I'd appreciate them bringing him back down so I could finish the job! This is the same dog that wiped out my Wellsummers this spring. All I had handy was the .410, so I didn't get it. It was too far away and too fast.

    As I was leaving the neighbors, I found her and turned around and took her right back up to their house and said, "This is the one from yesterday...do something about the dog NOW." DD is friends with the youngest son and he told her they were getting rid of it today. It hasn't been back down, so I am wondering if it is gone. Hopefully so.

    I went ahead and put the baby in with the meaties. They are about the same size, so she'll be ok in there for a while. I'm not sure if it is a "she", because she is half (or quarter?) silkie and 1/2 EE. So, she has a black pea-like comb, gray skin, black legs, and light feathering on the sides of the legs. The feathering is a beautiful blue, like an Andalusian, and a black beak. It just looks like a female. I would think if it was a male, the comb would have some color?

    Thanks!

    Shelly
     

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