In the spring my husband bought me a pair of bantam Cochin Chickens. I have always wanted Cochins, but we just never managed to get them for some reason or another. I was really excited, not only are Cochins a super cute breed of chicken, but they are known for being a really good breed for raising chicks - that is to say Cochin hens are known for being broody.
My husband and I have never raised chicks from eggs yet, we always bought mature birds, although one time we did buy week old chicks - most turned out to be roosters so we sold those.
As the summer went on I was worried, the hen laid many eggs, but was not sitting on them. I know a hen will usually lay many eggs before sitting on them but got worried when she kept laying other batches of eggs in other areas of her coop. I had no choice but to wait. One day in June I did not see her in the pen, and soon realized she was indeed finally sitting on the eggs. I had no idea how many eggs she had under her.
For the next 21 days we waited. Then on July 12, when I came home I noticed something was different, indeed mother Cochin had hatched out some chicks, and one had even fallen from the coop. I picked that one up and it rushed under its mother to get warm. We didn't disturb mother hen to see how many she had but were certain it was at least 4.
A couple of days later, mother hen took her little ones out of the coop and into the fenced yard to look around, it was the first day it had not rained here in ages. The chicks seemed to enjoy it and stayed fairly close to mother hen. Both the hen and rooster kept a watchful eye on all nine chicks.
If you are planning on keeping chickens and letting them raise chicks be sure you have a pen that is strong and the wire is such that the tiny chicks cannot get out. You need to have chick starter for the little ones too, and be sure there is no water that they can fall into or even shallow water that will wet them and give them a chill.
Read more here: Raising Pet Cochin Chickens
Why Won't My Chicken Eggs Hatch?