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Is mama not the mothering type?!

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Author Topic: Is mama not the mothering type?!  (Read 171 times)
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« on: September 25, 2014, 08:55:19 am »

Our hen, Coco, has just finished setting her first clutch of eggs. I know the timing is terrible--it's getting pretty cool here--and I have some concerns about her mothering as well.

Of a clutch of 8 eggs, only 2 survived. One died just before hatching (shell was broken, could clearly see the duckling), possibly due to exposure. I doubt any more will hatch.

Coco doesn't seem very interested in her babes. She left them to come out and eat, and didn't seem concerned that they followed her out & were shivering. I picked one up, and she didn't seem to care. I watched them, then went in to get the baby waterer and a small dish for food. Now, when I picked up the ducklings to show them their water (like one does with chicks), she did jump up on me and grab my coat with her bill. And she did lead them back into the little hut where she made her nest.

Storey's guide doesn't really go much into mother hen behavior, and the only experience I have is with chickens. What are the good/bad signs to look for?
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