Using broody hen to raise new chicks

TurnerFlock

In the Brooder
Oct 8, 2015
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We have a hen that just went broody. She's not even sitting on any eggs. We don't have a rooster either. We happened to have recently placed an order for 5 new chicks. They are due August 9th. Is it possible to trick the hen by placing a few eggs under her and then replace them with the new chicks when they arrive? Will this make integrating the new chicks to the flock easier? We only have 2 other hens. Our chickens are mostly pets to us that happen to give us eggs. Will having the hen raise the chicks make that more difficult or should we raise by hand? I know it's a lot of questions. Thanks for any help.
 

Mountain Peeps

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This can be a tricky situation but it can work. Is your hen serious about being broody? If she isn't then you can't be certain she will sit on the eggs until the chicks arrive and/or want to raise them. However, if she seems to be a dead-serious broody, it will probably work. Broodies will usually adopt any kind of chick, whether it's their own or not so giving her some that aren't hers shouldn't be a issue.. It would definitely help you with the interrogation of the chicks since the hen will be there to defend them. Be sure that you provide a safe get-away from mom and babies to escape from any bullies in the flock.

Definitely put a lot of fake eggs under the hen so she thinks she is incubating them. Then, slip the chicks under her at night and remove the eggs. Hopefully, all will work smoothly. :)
 
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