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  Peahen adopted six-week-old chick. Does this happen often?
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  Post new topic   Reply to topic The United Peafowl Association - www.peafowl.org Forum Index » Incubation, Hatching, and Peachick care     
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Suz



Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 3
Location: Washington State
PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:52 pm Reply with quote

My boyfriend and I are new to peafowl this summer. Sorry, I am not a member, but will try to do it soon--it's just one more thing to fit in.

What I want to know is how common is it for a peahen to adopt a six-week-old chick? We got peafowl because my boyfriend has wanted them for a long time and there were some out-of-control ones that got in trouble with the law, so we volunteered to capture and relocate a bunch of them. I tell you that because we captured one sitting on eggs, and we took the eggs to a pheasant breeder near our house and he put them in the bottom of his incubator. One little hen chick survived.

In the meantime, our dominant hen sat on eggs that weren't fertile. After 33 days we took them away from her, and she was back to her pecking, trouble-making self, including to the chick from the incubator, now six weeks old. However, somehow after about a week-and-a-half we saw her up near the chick's light bulb on the highest perch and she had the chick under her wing. We don't know how it came about, and just guess that the chick showed enough baby-behavior to trigger her instincts left over from brooding the eggs. Chick wasn't bonded to the hen, and got pecked a bunch while she figured out which of the hens was letting her snuggle, but the dominant hen monitored the chick in general and stopped pecking it. The chick is starting to figure out which hen it is and that she is a safe-zone for her. So, they are hanging out together now. We are just wondering if this is rare or common. All the peafowl are happy with the situation because the hen is busy monitoring the chick and leaves everyone else alone most of the time. We are enjoying watching them, and really enjoy the peafowl a lot!

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D C T
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Joined: 16 Nov 2007
Posts: 887
Location: Georgia, USA
PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 9:10 pm Reply with quote

It is indeed VERY unusual for this to happen. It would be more common for the peahens
to abuse or murder the peachick.
But many years ago I did have a bantam hen that surprised me by making friends with
a cockerel that had become ill and was no longer with his family. This was a very young
hen that had not layed any eggs that I know about. Even so she was very motherly to
the poor cockerel

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Suz



Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 3
Location: Washington State
PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 9:34 pm Reply with quote

Wow, thanks for letting me know. I'm glad she didn't get killed. She was raised for several weeks in the house with a pheasant that was a little older, but when the pheasant became aggressive it went home and we put her pen inside the big pen outside. I think that gave the birds a chance to get used to her. We have three chicks which are several months old, and they were particularly interested in her, maybe because her baby-look was familiar to them.

We let her out on little visits in the big pen and we could tell she was really quick, so when she was big enough not to escape we let her stay with the big birds. We must have accidently done it right, because it's working out.

Thanks again! This forum has been super helpful to us in getting this right.

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Joined: 16 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 6:10 am Reply with quote

You are welcome. I exist to serve my Creator by helping His most helpless creatures.
Mother who died in 2001 raised me with chickens but I did not meet peafowl until 1988
when somebody asked Mother to hatch his peahen eggs with her chickens. I still use
chickens for most of my incubating.

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MinxFox
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Joined: 05 Oct 2009
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Location: Florida
PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2015 8:21 pm Reply with quote

Hi welcome to the world of peafowl! I brought my boyfriend into my peafowl hobby since I met him and one year I loaned him an incubator and gave him a peafowl egg to hatch out. He did a great job hatching the peachick, but a month or so later the peachick died so it was very sad for him. Sad

I have never heard of a peahen accepting a peachick that wasn't hers when she didn't already have peachicks. I think I have heard of people giving a peahen more peachicks when she already has a few. Usually this is done at night and they just slip the extra peachick(s) under her and she accepts them. Since she had been sitting on eggs for so long, she probably was expecting a peachick so it probably was instinctual like you said.

Haha I know what you mean about a dominant peahen! My peahen Ice is the queen of the pen. All the peahens had a nice break from her when she was nesting and then when she had her own peachicks. The funny thing is one of the peafowl decided to peck off all of Ice's crest feathers when she was nesting. I guess that was payback for her being so bossy!
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D C T
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Joined: 16 Nov 2007
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Location: Georgia, USA
PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2015 8:28 am Reply with quote

PLEASE NOTE:
THIS TOPIC BEGAN SEPT 13 2013
and was brought to the top somebody who has nothing better to do than play games
with us. I have deleted that post.

Always check the date when a topic began

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MinxFox
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Location: Florida
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:05 pm Reply with quote

Oh oops sorry about that DCT!
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D C T
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Joined: 16 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:46 pm Reply with quote

MinxFox wrote:
Oh oops sorry about that DCT!

MinxFox, that is OK. We live and learn......and I have been learning for many more years
than you have Cool

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