Tips on supporting a brooding hen and new chicks you cannot access?

brycepj

In the Brooder
Dec 17, 2019
16
24
34
I’ve got a construction debris pile in my backyard that I know some of my hens have been laying inside occasionally. But I recently discovered that one of my Delawares went broody in it. It’s a very stable pile and probably one of the safest spots in my yard. The closest I can get is probably about 5 feet from the nest. Taking apart the pile could spook the hen and crush the eggs. I’m inclined to let mum do her thing, but once the chicks are hatching, I’m not going to be able to get water or supplemental feed to them easily (not to mention I can’t really so anything to support mum along the way). Should I be fine putting those things somewhere close to the pile that mum will find? Should I just let mum get them watered and fed? Anyone been in this circumstance?
 
Nov 14, 2020
73
151
63
Pennsylvania
I think that your hen will be just fine getting her water from a spot near to the pile. Once the chicks are hatched, she'll wait till they are dried off and ready to go explore, then take them to food and water. Keep in mind that chicks can go for over a day directly after hatching without food or water. Good luck!! :thumbsup
 

jwehl

Crowing
Nov 3, 2020
3,747
11,483
383
Atlanta GA
Mine make nests in all sorts of crazy places, but they always show back up around the food and water after the chicks come. The upside is she does all the work. The downside is you have no control over turn-over rate on the eggs. I've had a hen show up with 15 babies and I've had a hen show up with 2. I would just put food and water nearish the pile, but she can be off the nest for up to 30 minutes, and they eat FAST so as long as shes not like a mile away, she should be fine. (I know you'll put some closer for your peace of mind though haha). If you cant reach her, then shes relatively safe from predators as well so that's great. Just make sure to prep your water sources to be chick safe (drown proof) in advance since you wont know when hatch day is.

edit: I change my opinion on the food and water to what is said above haha
 

Chickassan

Wattle Fondler
May 23, 2017
14,716
73,555
1,297
Greenville S.C, formerly Noneya U.S.A
Daytime a little buffet reasonably close she'd appreciate im sure.
Just keep it small, clean and daytime only.
Mine make nests in all sorts of crazy places, but they always show back up around the food and water after the chicks come. The upside is she does all the work. The downside is you have no control over turn-over rate on the eggs. I've had a hen show up with 15 babies and I've had a hen show up with 2. I would just put food and water nearish the pile, but she can be off the nest for up to 30 minutes, and they eat FAST so as long as shes not like a mile away, she should be fine. (I know you'll put some closer for your peace of mind though haha). If you cant reach her, then shes relatively safe from predators as well so that's great. Just make sure to prep your water sources to be chick safe (drown proof) in advance since you wont know when hatch day is.

edit: I change my opinion on the food and water to what is said above haha
 

jwehl

Crowing
Nov 3, 2020
3,747
11,483
383
Atlanta GA
Lucky, i'd enjoy not knowing.
No missing it here, discretion isn't a possibility with Faverolles.
Game or game mixes + 15 acres + so so so many places to hide.

it's a double edged sword though. breeding season this year we lost 3 peahens and their eggs. one was eaten which sucks but at least i can appreciate. The second one was killed the same night and the predator didnt even bother with it. The third one we found a nest one day, SO wanted to leave her be, and she was gone the next day. No nest debris, just gone. I had to buy peachicks! :eek:
 

Chickassan

Wattle Fondler
May 23, 2017
14,716
73,555
1,297
Greenville S.C, formerly Noneya U.S.A
I lost broody games on two acres, they hide so well!
They never did the puff and squawk nonsense either though didn't advertise their buisness.
Quite different compared to these fat frenchies, night and day.
Hate you had to buy peachicks because of varmint though.
15 acres is a good chunk to ward over, for sure.
Game or game mixes + 15 acres + so so so many places to hide.

it's a double edged sword though. breeding season this year we lost 3 peahens and their eggs. one was eaten which sucks but at least i can appreciate. The second one was killed the same night and the predator didnt even bother with it. The third one we found a nest one day, SO wanted to leave her be, and she was gone the next day. No nest debris, just gone. I had to buy peachicks! :eek:
 

jwehl

Crowing
Nov 3, 2020
3,747
11,483
383
Atlanta GA
I lost broody games on two acres, they hide so well!
They never did the puff and squawk nonsense either though didn't advertise their buisness.
Quite different compared to these fat frenchies, night and day.
Hate you had to buy peachicks because of varmint though.
15 acres is a good chunk to ward over, for sure.
Luckily the chickens dont know its 15 acres haha. The peafowl do wander a lot farther but still probably only half of it.
 

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