I have four, four week old chicks in the wood shed at the moment with their mother. They have nearly all their adult feathers and with it, they're getting boisterous and flying and looking for things to roost on. I'm not sure how many weeks I can keep them happily contained, or how much space they should really have. The hens are usually free ranging. I've seen it said on here that they should be the same size as the other hens. The thing is, the only other two hens are a couple of docile, timid black orpingtons, and the mother of the chicks is the bolshy gingernut hen who rules the roost. I don't see the other two hens having the guts to have a go at her chicks, but I am worried about predators in an open area, particularly as we have a cat How well are the mothers able to defend them? When do you start worrying less about cats? TIA!