As of yesterday, one of our Dorking hens has decided to abandon her chicks. Her chicks aren’t day old’s that will not survive without her, they are more than a few weeks old. We have seen that they have slowly been wandering farther and farther from her during the day. It was still shocking to see yesterday that she wanted nothing to do with them, and sad to watch them try to be close to her, only to have her peck them away.
This is the first time I’ve seen a hen abandon her chicks like this. In the past this hen has continued to raise her chicks until we’ve had to separate them. Not sure what has changed this time, but it looks like these 5 little ones are on their own.
The other Dorking hen is the exact opposite, she isn’t showing any signs of being ready to let her chick go, in fact, she is aggressively protective. Lookout anyone/thing that gets between her and her baby.