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Integrating 2 New Pullets 8 weeks Old with 8 6 week olds

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I hope I'm in the right spot! I started with 7 pullets and rooster (2 each of RIRs, Golden SexLink, Bkue Andalusians and Silver Laced Wyandottes) as baby chicks 6 weeks ago and am looking to add 2 8 week old Americaunas today. I have a large 8'x8' coop and a 10'x20' run. Do I really just slip the two new ones onto the roost tonight after 10pm and see how things are when I get up in the morning? Or do I keep them in a crate inside the coop overnight and try letting them out in the run tomorrow when I can supervise? Any advice would be great!!!
post #2 of 7

I think that is a very good question. Really, I believe either tactic is sound, and would work out fine, especially at this young age. I'd probably go with just slipping them in at dusk. Maybe put their crate in, with the door open? Let them decide.

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Update: these girls are very, very afraid. They were in a cage of about 2x3x2 with 3 other birds the same size and clearly have had problems as one has almost no tail feathers and both have been pecked badly on their behinds. That being the case, I decided my dog crate in the coop was an upgrade in personal space for them and would do while I closely supervise their time with my flock during the day.
post #4 of 7

It is hard to add less to more. Was hoping the slightly bigger size might help. It didn't.

 

What doe your run look like? Is it just a single level open rectangle? I see a lot of those on here, and they can cause problems. They look like a lot of space, but it is all open, and birds can't get away from each other or out of sight. You need to add some hideouts, but do make sure that each hide out has two exits, so a bird cannot get trapped in there.

 

Add a pallet up on a single row of cement blocks. Little birds can get either up on top or down underneath. So while it looks a bit more cluttered, it actually doubles the space. Lean a couple of pallets against a wall, so that a bird can walk behind it, get in a little shade, get out of sight of other birds. Set a pallet straight up, then put feed and water dishes on one side, and clear across the pen on the other side add some another feed bowl and water. Add a couple of roosts out in the coop too. 

 

This will give less dominant birds a place to escape. In chicken society, two birds approach each other. The less dominant bird gives way and often times leaves the area, getting out of sight of the dominant bird. A big problem is when there is NO WHERE to go, the dominant bird takes offense and attacks again, a bit harder to prove her point, and eventually it gets rather brutal.

 

good luck, 

 

Mrs K

Western South Dakota Rancher
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Western South Dakota Rancher
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post #5 of 7
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post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

I set the two of them up in a med dog crate inside the greater pen. Since they were in such a small space and freaked out when we tried the run, I thought they might feel safer this way the first few nights.
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

My regular 6 week old flock is in the complete opposite corner of the 8x8 ft building on their roost. They aren't very interested except the little rooster who seems to be confused by the whole ordeal!
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