Surprise Chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by mhschafer, Oct 29, 2014.

  1. mhschafer

    mhschafer Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 1, 2012
    Hi. For about 4 years we have bought day old chicks and broods them. This year we did straight run and raised the cockerels to 6 months. Two weeks ago they were processed for meat. Today we discovered one of our pullets leading around 10 chicks! We have never had a hen hatch chicks. We are in northern IL and it is supposed to freeze tonight. Should we put the mama and babies in a pen in the barm by themselves or leave them with the flock? She didn't brood them in the coop but has led them back to the vicinity of the coop. We have about 30 hens. Thanks for your thoughts.
     
  2. HighStreetCoop

    HighStreetCoop Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    If she can get them up into the coop, I'd let her and leave her be. If not, then yeah, find her some shelter of her own so she can keep the babies warm.

    Best of luck with them!
     
  3. mhschafer

    mhschafer Out Of The Brooder

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    I am not sure she can get them up the ramp? Also I am a little concerned if the other hens will harm the chicks? What about putting mama and babies in a large dog crate and putting the crate in the coop? At least until they get to know each other?
     
  4. Sadie57

    Sadie57 Out Of The Brooder

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    We had a Bantam hen hatch out two EE eggs and we did put them in an extra large dog crate to protect them. I guess more from the rooster than the hens. I'm just not sure how big they have to be before we can let them in with the others.
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I let momma raise babies in the flock all the time. The only time I had a problem was when a very alpha hen and the omega hen hatched within a day of each other, and alpha hated one of omega's chicks. That instance aside, momma's quite capable of taking care of the chicks and letting the other hens know the babies are off limits. I'd say just keep an eye on where they're sleeping. They don't need to sleep in the coop if momma had a relatively safe place to camp out with them. She'll keep them warm as long as they're dry and out of the wind.
     
  6. Sadie57

    Sadie57 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank You Golden Feather. I did let Moma Rosey and one month old babies out of temporary coop today so she could forage with them. She seemed to want them back in the pen after a while and she, herself started making nice with the big girls in main pen. So I let them out with her and shut babies pen door. She spent the afternoon with the flock, but as dusk approached the rest went in to roost and she stood outside her babies pen. I opened their door and in she went. Guess she isn't quite done mothering after all.
     

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