Can chickens be taken away from the mother at 4 weeks old?
Yes, they really have little to learn from the mother hen. While the momma hen offers some protection within the flock the chicks are pretty much on their own as far as learned behavior. They come out of the shell knowing how to eat and drink. Eggs hatched at many farms are artificially incubated and the chicks never know a mother hen anyway. One they have a good start on feathering and are active, they can be grouped together by relative age or released into the main flock.