When will momma take her babies out for the first time?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Shaunassy, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. Shaunassy

    Shaunassy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is whinnie my wheaton ameraucana and her 4 adopted baby chicks. When I got them and put them under her they were already 4 days old. Tomorrow will be a week since she has been with them yet she still hasnt even tried to take them outside. Other broodies I had would take there babies out starting at 1-2 days old yet whinne hasnt even tried even when I leave the door open all day. When will she take them outside?
     
  2. silkie1472

    silkie1472 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She may not have "imprinted" on them yet, meaning that she is not sure where they came from. I would try physically moving her out, and then see how she reacts to the chicks.
     
  3. Shaunassy

    Shaunassy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She walks around in the coop with them, goes to the feeder and clucks and shows them how to eat. if i try and touch one she fluffs up at me and gets between me and the babies and will bite me if i get to close. Also she clucks at them if they are to far away and they come running.
     
  4. silkie1472

    silkie1472 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, good. What I would do is move her away from the box and prevent her from going back during the day. Then at night, I would let her go back. Giving her access to the nest box makes her feel safe and secure, but staying there is not healthy for her or the chicks, so I would move her.
     
  5. rebrascora

    rebrascora Overrun With Chickens

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    If you intend to move her out, make sure you have plenty of time to supervise them and intervene if necessary, particularly if there is a ramp or some other physical barrier which might mean that they get separated and the broody has to decide which chicks to stay with and which to abandon. Just like pullets don't all start laying at the same age, so broody hens won't all range with their chicks in the same time frame. Most hens have imprinting with their chicks since before hatch so it's not unreasonable for this broody to take a little more time than usual to be confident she can marshal them before she encourages them to leave the safety of the coop, because she is having to bond with them further down the line than normal. I would put a scoop of dirt from the run or your garden into the coop so that she can teach them to scratch in it and pick up beneficial bacteria. It may encourage her to dust bath which is usually a priority for broody hens after they have been setting for so long and that may get her thinking about going outside.

    Good luck with them

    Barbara
     
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