I am new to chickens.
I currently have 8. I got the first 6 around 6 and 8 weeks old. Then I got two, 1 day olds that I have been raising indoors. They are now 5 1/2 weeks. The older chicks are now around 4 - 5 months. They are not laying yet.
They older chicks free range in my upper yard. They are all fenced in, but it is a large space with lots of brush and a wooded area. They also have a coop, of course.
I want to introduce the newest ones. So far, for the past week, I have been penning the little ones within the other's space. They have been spending the whole day up there. I put a pet carrier in the pen so they have cover if they need it. The older chicks inspect them for a while then go on their way. There has been a little pecking through the chicken wire, but nothing too aggressive.
I read that it's a good idea to give the newest ones a chance to be in the coop by themselves so they can find the food and water and get used to the space, so tomorrow, I am going to do that with a run area that the older chicks won't have access to and I am hoping that by the end of the day, maybe they can all live together in peace?
- is 5 1/2 weeks too young? I think they are fully feathered.
- I am thinking, (hoping), that, because the older ones are really pretty young still, they may not be too hard on the new ones.....is that possible?
- Before I leave them all alone together, should I let a couple of the older ones in with the little ones and stay with them to see what happens...should I have food in that space too, since food seems to be the biggest issue with chickens!
I have read a lot of what has been posted, but it seem everything was about introducing an older chicken into an established group of adult chickens. Lot's about quarantine, but that is not an issue here.
Do the ages of my birds make any difference?
Sorry for the long post. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you!
Edited by emill38 - 7/27/12 at 6:30pm