BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Raising Baby Chicks › When should I integrate one 3 week old chick with five 11 week old pullets?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

When should I integrate one 3 week old chick with five 11 week old pullets?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Right now the 3 week old is in the coop but separated from the other chickens with a wire wall. The five 11 week old pullets grew up together, the 3 week old is all alone. She has been separated from the others for about a week and now they hardly notice her. When should I remove the wire wall between them?
1 Husband, 3 Ameraucana's, 2 White Leghorns, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Farm Kitty, and 1 Dog
Reply
1 Husband, 3 Ameraucana's, 2 White Leghorns, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Farm Kitty, and 1 Dog
Reply
post #2 of 8

3 weeks ago, now or when they are the same size. 11 week olds have now established a pecking order and have an established flock. You could try it now but they may not take kindly to an outsider.

NPIP 43-813

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”                  Mark Twain

Reply

NPIP 43-813

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”                  Mark Twain

Reply
post #3 of 8
What age is pecking order established?
post #4 of 8

It depends on the batch but can start by about 6 weeks but may be much later. They don't consider themselves a flock that is not to be messed with until about 10 weeks. A lot of introduction has to do with how much space they have. The more, the better.

NPIP 43-813

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”                  Mark Twain

Reply

NPIP 43-813

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.”                  Mark Twain

Reply
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChickenCanoe View Post

3 weeks ago, now or when they are the same size. 11 week olds have now established a pecking order and have an established flock. You could try it now but they may not take kindly to an outsider.

So we ended up cutting a small opening in the wire so that the young chick can go out and interact with the bigger chickens if she wants, and go back in her space if they are mean. So far every time she goes out there they peck at her little face! They even drew a little blood! Should I cover the opening until she is bigger? Or just see what happens? I'm scared they will peck her to death hmm.png so far she runs to safety but she might not get so lucky all the time!
Edited by briannanoelle1 - 4/22/16 at 12:08pm
1 Husband, 3 Ameraucana's, 2 White Leghorns, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Farm Kitty, and 1 Dog
Reply
1 Husband, 3 Ameraucana's, 2 White Leghorns, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Farm Kitty, and 1 Dog
Reply
post #6 of 8

I'd give her another week or two to grow a bit more before letting her mix with the older chicks. Chickens instinctively pick on the youngest, smallest bird around. That's just how they are. There is quite a big size difference between 3 month old chicks and a one month old chick.

post #7 of 8

You created what I call a panic room when you cut a small entrance into the younger chick's pen. It's a great way to provide a refuge for chicks to retreat to as they are learning to mingle with older chickens for the first time. If you can cut several entrances so the chick can access it from all directions, it will provide more safety than just one hole. Three weeks is usually old enough for a chick to understand the dangers related to older chickens, and she will likely be very agile in evading them.

 

Your problem is that this is the only chick of this size and age in your flock, and she will be singled out and focused on relentlessly for the next six months, at least. For this very reason, there is a cardinal rule in chicken keeping that you do not ever introduce a single chick or chicken to an existing flock. It's unbelievably hard on the single bird.

 

Besides that, this solitary chick has no cohorts by which to gain its own self confidence, since that comes from being part of a unit of chicks one is brooded with. So your chick has two counts going against her. Because of this, she may grow up to be a timid chicken and timid chickens are destine to be picked on, just as timid kids often are victims on a school playground. There is a slim chance that your chick has a spunky temperament, but it would likely be tampered down by it being a lone chick.

 

I hate to be such a wet blanket, but you need to understand what you're facing. Chicken society has strict rules, and this chick, being a loner, is breaking a big one. Is there any way to find another two chicks of the same breed, and age so this chick has a chance at a normal life?

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by azygous View Post

You created what I call a panic room when you cut a small entrance into the younger chick's pen. It's a great way to provide a refuge for chicks to retreat to as they are learning to mingle with older chickens for the first time. If you can cut several entrances so the chick can access it from all directions, it will provide more safety than just one hole. Three weeks is usually old enough for a chick to understand the dangers related to older chickens, and she will likely be very agile in evading them.

Your problem is that this is the only chick of this size and age in your flock, and she will be singled out and focused on relentlessly for the next six months, at least. For this very reason, there is a cardinal rule in chicken keeping that you do not ever introduce a single chick or chicken to an existing flock. It's unbelievably hard on the single bird.

Besides that, this solitary chick has no cohorts by which to gain its own self confidence, since that comes from being part of a unit of chicks one is brooded with. So your chick has two counts going against her. Because of this, she may grow up to be a timid chicken and timid chickens are destine to be picked on, just as timid kids often are victims on a school playground. There is a slim chance that your chick has a spunky temperament, but it would likely be tampered down by it being a lone chick.

I hate to be such a wet blanket, but you need to understand what you're facing. Chicken society has strict rules, and this chick, being a loner, is breaking a big one. Is there any way to find another two chicks of the same breed, and age so this chick has a chance at a normal life?

7B8D489D-DD46-4CEE-9F2F-3BC30A082E29_zps1xvmcklh.jpg

E62DE4B8-F469-454B-90CA-236856F645AD_zpsbioffsna.jpg

*Update*

Our little baby is starting to fit in with her big sisters. Last night she climbed/flew on top of her (safe house) wire wall enclosure to sleep on top with the big girls smile.png I think she'll be ok. She's a brave girl!
1 Husband, 3 Ameraucana's, 2 White Leghorns, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Farm Kitty, and 1 Dog
Reply
1 Husband, 3 Ameraucana's, 2 White Leghorns, 1 Rhode Island Red, 1 Farm Kitty, and 1 Dog
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Raising Baby Chicks
BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Raising Baby Chicks › When should I integrate one 3 week old chick with five 11 week old pullets?