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Country Discussion Topics
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Tiny.little chicken
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Susanandherchooks    Posted 09-27-2003 at 22:57:50       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Hi there,
yesterday i helped hatching my first chicken!!!
It was one of the most exiting moments in my farming life.
Today there are already five of them and i am expecting another two.
I am a bit worried when if they will start eating by themselves or if i have to show them somehow?
The hen is very protective of them and doing a good job,as far as i can tell.
my other worry is our cat.Can i train her somehow?
Any ideas or expierience?
thanks from New Zealand!


Annie in KY    Posted 09-29-2003 at 08:22:18       [Reply]  [No Email]
Cool news with the new babies! I'm sure mamma hen will do a fine job on her own. She'll show them all they need to know. The squirt gun sounds like a good idea to teach the cats to stay away from new chicks. I haven't had to deal with cats and new baby chicks but, I've got this hen that comes up to the front porch every morning and climbs into the cat bed with my outdoor cats and lays her egg there every morning. Funny to see that hen laying there next to the cats.


RichZ    Posted 09-29-2003 at 06:32:12       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Our barn cats are deathly afraid of our chickens. The chickens even push them away from their food bowl. The cats don't realize that they could easily kill the chickens, and neither do the chickens. But chickens are usually very agressive, especially if they have chicks. I think your chickens will quickly train the cats to stay away from the chicks.


Tom A    Posted 09-28-2003 at 10:24:58       [Reply]  [No Email]
Congratulations, Mom!

The hen will teach them everything they need to know. We raised our first several flocks with purchased chicks, so we were surrogate parents. Lately, we have had several mother hens and their chicks are much more advanced than the ones we raise...they aren't as friendly/petlike, but they are healthier, faster-growers and can fend for themselves.

As far as the cat goes, we originally trained ours with a squirt gun. Whenever a cat would show an interest in the chicks and stalk them, we'd squirt it...they never caught on that it was us and seem to think that chicks squirt water so they now steer wide and clear from any chicks in the yard. It has been several years since the squirtgun has been out, yet they still remember.

good luck,
Tom


Cindi    Posted 09-28-2003 at 06:12:05       [Reply]  [No Email]
Chances are the hen (maybe even the rooster) will train her. Many a barn cats has lost an eye to a mad mother hen. If they are in a pen I would put some chick mash in an area that only they can get to. Fix up something along the lines of a creep feeder, something the chicks can go under but not a full sized chicken, or anything you put out is going to be eaten by the other chickens. I use an inverted plastic milk crate with two cinder blocks sitting on top to weight it. then I cut out small holes at the bottom to let the chicks in and out.


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