a hard/sad lesson (hen killed chick)greenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
I learned that at 8 days old, a chick can be swiftly killed by another chicken no matter if it's momma is there to protect it.
Sad, sad. My momma hen only had this one chick and has been cooped up in a cage for a wk wanting out badly! My normal rule is to keep them separated for until chicks are 2 wks old. But it's been hot & she wanted out.. So today, i let her & her baby out. She loved it...took dust baths, scratched for bugs, the whole time that baby right by her side. They looked happy and content! Things looked fine for the 30 min. i was out there to watch my flocks reactions to their being out. No problems. So i decided to go start dinner with short trips outside to check, make sure everyone was okay. Turns out another momma hen(her chicks are 3 wks old) most likely killed that sweet thing as i found both momma's squabbling when i went to check the last time. That momma hen was actually nudging her dead, limp chick up under her after i broke the 2 up.
Wish she had more than 1 baby, so she wouldn't be left chickless. It's a sad sight to watch a momma hen run around clucking desperately looking for her chick. Such a sad lesson today....i feel so bad for that momma hen & the dead chick who didn't hardly have a chance at life as a result of my bad judgement...
-- Buk Buk (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 28, 2001
Hello Buk Buk: I am very sorry this sad thing happened; but don't be too hard on yourself - you did what you thought was best and I'm sure I would have done the same thing! Its hard for us to understand how a momma hen could think of that little one as a threat to her own chicks; but she sure must have. Maybe the chickless hen will get broody again quick. I hope so. May God Bless, Cynthia
-- Cynthia (email@example.com), July 28, 2001.
We had a similar situation when I was a child and we took an incubated egg at hatching and let the hatchling imprint to the chickless hen. This might work for you.
-- Jay Blair in N. AL (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 29, 2001.
Buk Buk, this is a normal thing for poultry to do. It's safest to keep mom and kids separated until the chicks or ducklings can fend for themselves. I don't let my ducklings with the rest of the flock until they can fly or are fully feathered. Most good books will tell you this. It seems silly to us that another hen would kill chicks not her own but it's the way nature works. A lesson learned.
-- Little Quacker (email@example.com), July 29, 2001.
If it is any consolation to you, you educated me with this posting. I did not realize you can't put them together and when I get my chickens I probably would have done the same thing. So, you prevented me from experiencing the loss of baby chicks. Thank you for sharing so others can learn.
-- Colleen (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 30, 2001.
Books are a good investment, I can't imagine not learning about something before bringing it home. That's what the library and book stores are for. We learn by others experience and maybe save some heartbreak.
-- Little Quacker (email@example.com), July 30, 2001.
Well Little Quacker that's a good theory(kinda like alot of the info in books). But quite a bit of info. in books is contradictory and skips some areas; so it is still hit and miss, as you may find out. I think it was great for Buk Buk to share that experience with us; so that many can learn from it. It sticks with you more that something from a book also, I think. Thank you Buk Buk Cynthia
-- Cynthia Speer (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 30, 2001.