When should I let the hens have chicks?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Attila the Hen, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. Attila the Hen

    Attila the Hen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 6, 2010
    Blue Ridge GA
    I am thinking about letting the hens have chicks and wondered what time of year to do it. Is it too early now with the cold? I am in the GA mountains and it is going down to the 30s at night. I thought I'd just let them do their thing, no incubators etc. Am I missing something?
    Any advise would be appreciated.
     
  2. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Well, the hens have to be broody to either set on eggs or accept chicks given to them. Not all hens go broody. You need to wait until you have a broody hen....

    You can tell a hen is broody by her behavior: she stays on the nest all the time, puffs up and growls at you when you go to take her eggs, and does not roost at night. She stays on the nest, looking very "flat" like a pancake, to cover all the eggs or the imaginary eggs... because they don't need fertile eggs or any eggs at all to "go broody."

    Hope that helps.
     
  3. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think April is just about perfect where we live in North Texas; chicks hatching out in early May.
     
  4. Attila the Hen

    Attila the Hen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 6, 2010
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    That helps ALOT. I don't believe any of my hens are broody by the sound of it. Although they did hide over a dozen eggs this week on one nest. I thought production was down and suspected they had hidden some but not that many. Is this an indication that they want to breed?hiding their eggs or laying them someplace other than the laying box?
    thank you
     
  5. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Not really... hens are funny creatures. All it takes is one hen to lay an egg someplace else, and the rest of 'em think, "Oh, that's a GOOD place for eggs!" and add to the hidden nest. It's one reason why folks (like me) put golf balls in the nest boxes so there's always something there to fake 'em out and think it's THE place to lay eggs.
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    my rooster was behind the trash can today trying convince one of his girls that this was a good place to lay an egg, yep my dogs would have had raw egg for snack.. they can be pretty nutty these chickens.[​IMG]
     

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