Will broody hen accept newly hatched chicks?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by grandmachicken, Mar 18, 2009.

  1. grandmachicken

    grandmachicken Songster

    Sep 15, 2008
    Williamson, GA
    I have a 6 month old pullet, Millie, who is currently setting on 7 eggs, one her own and 6 from my other 3 girls, now on day 14. One of my other hens, Littler, yesterday went suddenly broody - I mean out of control crazy broody - she pushed Millie off her nest and wouldn't let her back on until I physically removed her and put her in a nest that had 3 fake eggs in it! Now she won't get off the fake eggs, and she's in everyone's favorite nest. The other two are going into the nest (which is a large pet carrier) and laying an egg beside her, which I have to confiscate before she steals it to add to her clutch of fake eggs!

    So - I was thinking about getting some Ameracauna chicks from the feed store, anyway. If I put the chicks in the nest under Littler, do you think she will snap out of it and raise the chicks? Or will she need to set on her fake eggs for a certain amount of time to fulfill some kind of hormonal cycle? Or is she more likely to ignore them, or worse, dispatch them because they are not "hers"??? [​IMG]


  2. Msbear

    Msbear Fancy Banties

    May 8, 2008
    Sharpsburg, MD.
    I would stick them under the hen that has been broody and stick the eggs under the newly broody. That way the older broody will be ready for them. At night, take the eggs out and put them in another nest and put the new broody on them and put the babies under the older broody.

    Watch them for a few minutes, then come back and check on them a few times to make sure.

    I do it all the time. They're happy to get the babies every time. Good Luck
  3. Msbear

    Msbear Fancy Banties

    May 8, 2008
    Sharpsburg, MD.
    Oh! you may want to separate the broodies. There has been cases of baby stealing that can get pretty nasty and you don't want those eggs to go cold...maybe bring momma and babies in the house in a crate in the laundry room for a few days. [​IMG]
  4. Bornacentury2L8

    Bornacentury2L8 Songster

    Mar 10, 2009
    Cartersville, Ga.
    I would try it. I've put chicks under a hen that already had chicks and that worked. I would do it at night and remove the fake eggs. Let us know how it works.
    msbear's idea sounds even better.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 18, 2009

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: