Thanks so much for the information in this extremely long thread lol.....I just love this concept and plan to do this very thing in the next week or so to add to my flock. I have only a couple of questions that I must have missed the answers to. First, I plan to build a brooder box, place it in my coop run, and put the littles out there after a week or two on my covered back porch in a dog crate. I am going to place the dog crate in the brooder box and as they grow let them have more space but access to the MHP set up. Other than protection from weather, predators, and the Bigs in the flock, am I missing something? Can the littles and their MHP be put outside in a brooder box until they are old enough to integrate into the bigs flock?
Second question is when the two flocks are combined, how do you keep the littles on starter feed from the bigs who are on layer pellets? In other words how do you set up their feed stations? Or does it even matter?
For background info, I have 8 Bigs who are almost 3 years old. In April 2013, I started with 11 baby chicks and raised them in a deck box on my enclosed front porch until they could be moved to a coop. I have only lost 3 chickens in the past 3 years, and all after they were grown and laying. One to crop problem, one to fly strike, and one just don't know what happened to her. (found dead under coop one morning).
They sleep in a 8x6 coop, spend their days in a 17'x24' run, and have an extensive fenced in larger run.
Thanks for any help.