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Newcommer pullet intergration... it's not so easy.

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 

here's a situation:
I bought 6 Barred Rock pullets (all for under 25$.. couldn't say no)
4 weeks ago (they're now 10 weeks, they've been in quarantine)
I have a "main" coop and two runs that are partitioned but the gates will open to form one big chicken yard, the smaller partition has housing also. My chickens HATE these newcommers. My two bantams "tolerate" them.. but my previous two youngest hens (light brahmas) have taken a liking to hanging with the bantams.. so i placed all 10 of these together,.. because i thought that would be better than them being with my large flock.. but the brahmas terrorize them.. bad,.
Now I could force the brahmas to join the large flock.. they are afterall the biggest hens, and i'm sure the intergration would work.. I just feel bad seperating the 4 (the bantams and brahmas) because they really like each others company..
haha trivial problem, but makes me feel bad.. 
everyone gets along fine freeranging, but I want the new 6 pullets to assemble into some sort of chicken society/hierarchy before I let them freerange.. feedstore birds are naive and sure to be easy pickings or even get lost (yeah they're kinda dumb)..smh

post #2 of 2


Well, you can handle it how you see fit, but from personal experience, I've had newcomers in a see but don't touch situation for a few weeks, then I turn them out to free range with all of the other chickens and let them come back and roost in whichever coop they want.  There is a bit of scuffling at first, but they eventually settle in.  My RIR's always peck at the others when food is involved, but that's because they are the undisputed flock mistresses and they act like it!  At any rate, as your pullets approach the point of lay, they will be more fully accepted into the flock.   Right now, they are viewed as competition for feed, and they aren't contributing to the flock population by laying eggs yet, so they rank pretty low in the pecking order.  The older hens will let them know it too.

 

I have three EE pullets that started laying about 6 weeks ago.  The difference in how they are treated by the flock now is dramatically different than before they began to lay.  So, there is hope!

Peeps61
Location: NW Florida
Chickens since Feb. 2013
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Peeps61
Location: NW Florida
Chickens since Feb. 2013
Reply
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