|4 days old, probably half Buff Orpington & half Silver Laced Wyandotte|
I really like letting one of my hens hatch and raise chicks. Some folks think it's risky, but it's always gone well for me. I've never even tried an incubator. Letting a mama hen do it is definitely a work-smarter-not-harder way. I don't need a brooder lamp, nor do I have to tend to pasty butt. Mama does it all.
|So far so good with the older chickens. They are curious but not aggressive.|
Note the whitewash flaking off the walls already! Next time I'll add glue.
It is true that hand-raised chicks have the instincts to find food and water on their own. They also become more accustomed to a human presence and are somewhat more "friendly" as adults. But hen raised chicks seem to have more "street smarts" at an earlier age. Most importantly, I think everybody needs a mother!
|There's no place like Mama.|
I'll let Mama decide when to take Baby Chicken out into the chicken yard. Her hardware cloth fence is opened a bit during the day so they can explore the coop. So far none of the adult chickens have expressed more than a mild curiosity. Even so Mama does an excellent job of keeping herself between her chick and them (and me). Integrating chicks with the rest of the flock has always been a concern and a challenge, but so far so good. I hope it stays that way.
Lone Baby Chicken © May 2014 by