Will hen adopt chicks without being broody?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by brandoncakes, Feb 15, 2013.

  1. brandoncakes

    brandoncakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    275
    5
    113
    Aug 25, 2010
    Kailua, HI
    Hi Everyone!

    We have a bantam white cochin hen(she just made 1 last month, so I can finally call her a hen), and she's an odd little girl. We raised her with her brother, but once he started to crow we gave him away. Since then she started to crow! I insisted she was a "she," and I was proved correct when we came home to find a small egg in her cage. I looked it up on the internet, and it seems that some hens will begin to crow if the rooster is taken from them. Another site said they'll stop once they start to lay eggs. Not mine, she crows still, but only when she's alone and wanting attention.

    Anyway, back on topic:
    I'll be getting 5 bantam chicks soon (3 gold Laced Cochins and 2 silkies). I was wondering if cochin hens will adopt chicks eventhough they aren't broody. Has anyone tried forcing them? I heard of a Buff Orpington hen stealing chicks from another, eventhough she hasn't gone broody. I was just wondering if cochins would do the same. My cochin hen is a house chicken. She lives in a cage in the house, sleeps out of her cage in a basket set next to our bed, and is kept outside during the day in the backyard. I have a brooder set up so we're prepared once the chicks arrive, but I was just curious if she'd do all the work. Should I test it out? Or should I let her eggs accumulate and see if she'll go broody?

    Brandon
     
  2. Sunyoung

    Sunyoung Out Of The Brooder

    49
    0
    22
    Sep 25, 2011
    Oregon
    Personally, I've never heard of a hen that is not broody adopt chicks. I wouldn't try forcing her to raise them. However, that is ultimately your choice. Just keep a very close eye on them - many hens will kill chicks should they feel like not being broody - and even when they are broody, I've heard of many a hen kill its chicks.
     
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    I am by no means an expert or anything, but I wouldn't want to risk chicks on the hope a non-broody Cochin will accept them.

    I have a Cochin and three bantam Cochin-mixed hens who are my traditional broodies. When they aren't broody, they don't particularly like chicks. I have had a broody Cochin adopt a chick shortly after she lost one.... But she was kinda team-brooding with another hen anyway.

    I'd rather risk wooden eggs to see if she will go broody..... Because only the broody goddess has control over that; nothing we can do to turn the switch on to get one.
     
  4. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

    5,466
    994
    291
    Dec 25, 2012
    X 2
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by