We went out of town and came home to two brooding mamas.. this is our first time. Do we take babie

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by hutchsgirl, Dec 31, 2016.

  1. hutchsgirl

    hutchsgirl New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Dec 31, 2016
    Detroit, Texas
    We went out of town and came home to two brooding mamas. Not knowing how long they had been sitting on the eggs we left them. A few weeks past and yesterday my boys checked the house. 7 chicks!

    But both hens still have lots of eggs under them.

    My guys put them in box in the house with a light

    We've put out water and. Starter. They are eating and drinking except one.

    Should we put them back out with her?

    We didn't think we would have babies.

    Should I put them back? And my boxes my 14 year old built they are kinda tall. I'm thinking they can't follow her out.

    Any suggestions would be great.

    I'm going to mark the eggs under them. And start taking away any more. I think another hen is coming to the box and laying. [​IMG]
     
  2. TKMS

    TKMS Out Of The Brooder

    12
    0
    22
    Apr 27, 2015
    Mid Michigan
    I am by no means an expert and have only my past experience to share. If your chickens will free range at all, I believe the chicks are best raised by their mamas (assuming the mamas do a decent job). My current incubator hatched hens have far less "street smarts" than my past flock that was raised by their mamas. Even considering that the new incubator hens are Buckeye, known as good free range, compared to the former mixed breed Silkies, not considered good free range.
     
  3. DancingWthDucks

    DancingWthDucks Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,065
    161
    166
    Feb 21, 2016
    Cumbria, UK
    I would give them back to the mamas- it's a lot more natural and the hens will do the job of raising them for you. Are any of the eggs under the broody hen hatching?
     
  4. hutchsgirl

    hutchsgirl New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Dec 31, 2016
    Detroit, Texas
    That's where these came from. And I heard chirps yesterday but there are only eggs in box.. I'm a newbie. I'm guessing they are thinking of hatching. lol I'm kind of embarrassed. I wish I knew more. These birds are pets my 14 yr son feeds and pets them. Lol we weren't expecting babies
     
  5. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    7,593
    1,640
    421
    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    -
    Ok, you can give these chicks away on craigslist right now. Yes, you can hear chirps from inside the egg before the chick hatches. Just before they hatch. The chicks in the picture are cold. see how they are huddling in the corners of the box? They need supplemental heat for the 1st 4 weeks. Start with 90 degree heat and reduce it 5 degrees each week until the birds are at 70 degrees and fully feathered out on their breasts. Get a 60 to 80 watt incandescent light bulb and out it about 1 to 1 1/2 ft. off the ground. Get a cheap fish thermometer from walmart , the kind which sticks on the side of the tank. Stick it on the inside of the brooder at the height of the chicks back, It will vary 1-2 degrees from perfect temp but that is ok. Each week, move it up the side of the brooder as the chicks grow.
    You don't need to heat the whole brooder. Just give the chicks a warm spot where they can gather. The temp is right in the brooder when the chicks gather loosely under the light to sleep peacefully. Shrill cheeping means there is a draft in the brooder. That is bad for chicks. they need ventilation without chilly drafts. Also go to Tractor Supply or your feed store and get a small bottle of Bovidr Labs Poultry Nutri-Drench. It is very concentrated so the smallest bottle is plenty for your chicks. It s a wonderful product because the way it works is very forgiving of novice chicken raisers management mistakes. It gets energy quickly to chicks when they need it. And supplements their nutrition when they are not distressed.
    Do not put the light over the feed or water. It should be at the other end of the brooder.
    Be sure to watch for fammable situations when you set up the box and light. Actually a plastic tote works better. Because it can be disinfected, if need be. The chicks need 1/2 cubic ft. per chick for the 1st 2 weeks. Then 1 cubic ft. per chick until they get out of the broodr at about 4-5 weeks. If you keep them in a brooder longer than 4-5 weeks, they will need 1.5 cu, ft. per chick up to 3 months.
    Bovidr Labs Poultry Nutri-Drench instructions for poultry:
    Give each chick one drop only by mouth. If you don't want to open their mouths soak a Q-tip with the Drench and wipe it along side their beak. If the bird is weak, repeat every 8-10 hours until perky. Put some in their water so it looks like very weak tea. Do this for the 1st 2 weeks to get them off to a strong start. http://www.nutridrench.com It is all you need beside medicated chick starter crumbles. I like the Naturewise brand medicated crumbles by Cargill. Purina medicated crumbles are good too. Get the medicated it will help keep the chicks from getting cocci, a problem with the G.I. tract. After they are a week old you can put some chick grit in s small cup and put it in the brooder. This will help them develop a stronger, larger gizzard. You won't see any difference in the growing chicks visually but that stronger gizzard means up to 20% more eggs when they start laying because they can process their laying feed better and uptake more nutrition from it. Increase the size of the grit particles as the chicks get older. You can ask on BYC what that timetable and sizes of grit should be. No need to reference it in this post.
    The Drench will keep them from having the runs and getting pasty butt. Pasty butt is when the poop is hard and sticks to the birds anus keeping it from pooping any more. If the sticky poop is not wiped off with a wet warm cotton ball the chick will die because it can't poop.
    Do not raise the chicks on a slick surface like bare cardboard or news paper. It will give them crooked legs. Put down a layer of that cheap waffle weave drawer liner and change it every few days. That stuff gives the chicks a good foothold and helps give them strong legs and feet. You can also buy the white bale ( not the yellow bale ) of kiln dried wood shavings from Tractor Supply. Put down 2-3 inches on the brooder floor. Change if you notice it starting to smell, that means it needs changing.
    Now....if you decide to put them back with the hen...wait until dark when the hen is asleep. Put the chicks under her and do all this very quietly. Time will tell if she will accept them. Try not to use a light when you do this. You don't want to wake the hen if yo can help it. Put Drench water and the medicated chick starter crumbles out with the hens. It will not hurt them at all to eat it. The Drench is really good for them too.
    P.S. the Drench is so superior because it does not need to be digested. It mainlines directly into the blood stream. Giving quick energy and helping restore the immune system. Other helps need to be digested and if the chick or bird is weak, it may not be able to digest enough of the other helps to make a difference in getting well. Drench is all natural and measurable in the blood stream in 10 minutes. 50% uptake in 30 minutes. Total uptake in 4 hours.
    Keep your brooder clean and warm. Keep the water fresh with the Drench in it and don't let them run out of feed and all should be well. This is about all you need to know to raise chicks.
    Best Regards,
    Karen
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  6. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    7,593
    1,640
    421
    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    by the way, unless you want a whole bunch more chicks start throwing away the eggs under then hens now. If you do want to hatch them, put an ad in craigslist or free chicks and folk will probably call right away. Do not let any strangers near your chicks. Meet then out at the driveway to give them the chicks. Then make sure to change your clothes and wash you hand before you handle your chicks. You do not know if they need the chicks because their birds died from some disease, This will keep you from carrying anything back to your flock. you can take pics of the birds and their chicks to show to customers. You might get 50 cents a chick for them this time of year. But just giving them away is a great way to make sure you get rid of them quickly.
    Best,
    Karen
     
  7. hutchsgirl

    hutchsgirl New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Dec 31, 2016
    Detroit, Texas
    Thanks For the info I thought I had them too hot
     
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

    20,784
    3,931
    401
    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    After about 48 hours from first hatching, a hen's instincts shift from sitting on the eggs to taking care of chicks. If the eggs aren't hatched by then, she won't continue sitting on them and they will die. Give the chicks back to momma. She'll be able to take care of them just fine. Once she leave the nest to tend to chicks, she won't be back. And don't set any more eggs. If they've been broody long enough to hatch chicks, they've already spent 3 weeks barely eating and drinking. It's not safe to allow them to brood for another 3 weeks.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. hutchsgirl

    hutchsgirl New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Dec 31, 2016
    Detroit, Texas
    There are 3 hens that seem to be taking turns. Two were inn the same box earlier
     
  10. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    7,593
    1,640
    421
    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    get rid of all the eggs being sat on that you don't want to hatch.
    Yes, hens will lay eggs in other sitting hens nests, resulting in staggered timing in the hatches.
    Best,
    Karen
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2017

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by