Taking chicks from a momma hen

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by babsh, May 1, 2009.

  1. babsh

    babsh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2008
    Minnesota
    If I take a 2 day old chick (or two) from her, will she get upset?

    If I swap chicks with her, will she know? I was thinking of taking two from our incubator and swapping them for 2 that are under momma. All were hatched yesterday.

    Also, can they count? Do they know how many chicks they have?

    TIA
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Just depends on the chicken. You won't know til you try. She could accept a new chick or she could kill it.
     
  3. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008
    Virginia
    It all depends on the hens. I have easy-going Silkie hens and I do things like that all the time. The chicks are the ones to decide that's my mama and they're responsible for keeping up. The broody will choose a nest to set in at night and the babies hop up and tuck under her, but she will not go chasing strays. I don't know how many times I've had a chick adopt themselves to other broodies and no matter how many times I put them in the right nest, they'd adopt themselves out again! It usually only works if they're about the same size/age.

    I would make sure to leave the broody at least 1 chick for her emotional well being but it doesn't have to be one of the ones she hatched.
     

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