10 weeks old, refuse to come out of coop. Advice needed.

In the Sticks

In the Brooder
Aug 13, 2021
Hi all.
First just to say I am in the UK. If my terminology is not understood please say so.
We have an outdoor chicken run which has a wooden coop which has an automatic door. We have a mixture of bantams and silkies with one Serama cockerel. They really are my son and daughter-in-laws pets. Six mixed females and Bob the tiny cockerel.
They tried for a few weeks to get some more Serama bantams to give Bob some company of his own breed and bought three females from a breeder on Sunday morning. When they picked them up the breeder had them ready in a box and we released them into a mini run inside our main run. It has it`s own little wooden coop. So the older chickens can see them and get used to them.
However, one of the new chickens is one year old and the other two are tiny. We asked the breeder how old they are and he says one is 10-12 weeks and the other 16 weeks. They just sat in the bottom of the run not moving for ages, so we put them inside the little coop with the door open. They just wont venture out. We let them rest for the night with the door closed and thought we would see how they are this morning.
When I opened the door the one year old came straight out, feeding from the crumb and drinking the water. The two tiny ones have not moved. Its been about three hours now and I`m worried they havn`t eaten or drank in over 24 hours. UK time right now is 12:30 in the afternoon.
I have no experience with such small chicks. I tried putting chick crumb in a dish yesterday inside the coop next to them but they didn`t touch it.
What can I do?


Jan 5, 2021
Mexico, Puebla
Had a small cockrell with sort of that problem, they are terrified of the bigger animals, maybe the one year old pecked them? I had to keep the little one completely away from the big ones, and to me it was counter producing because the big ones wouldn't accept him. I've seen that the bigger they are the less they are scared of the other ones. The only thing I'd think of doing is to give them something more appetizing, like bits of canned tuna... If they are so small I'd personally separate them, but it might be complicated for you. I guess just leave the waterer and food where they are, and give them a chance to get more confidence, it might take a while.


Oct 23, 2020
Central Kentucky
It sounds like the little ones are just in shock from their boxing, and moving. I'm not a big advocate of food and water in the coop, but I would make an exception in this case. Once they see the older one going in and out of the coop it won't take them long to follow. Give them some time to adjust. I might also put some electrolytes in their water to help them pick up a bit. Congrats on your new babies.

In the Sticks

In the Brooder
Aug 13, 2021
I think they were/are still a bit shocked. They have started coming to the door, but the larger of the two has even ventured out of the door but soon popped back in.
I have seen them pecking at the crumb on the floor that was spilt a bit yesterday. I’ve put a shallow bowl of water which you can see on the photo.
I’m not at all convinced these babies are 10-12 weeks and 16 weeks. What do others think, baring in mind Seramas are tiny? You can see the lovely Bob on the other photo with the bigger girls.


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Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
Southeast Louisiana
To me size is pretty close to irrelevant in integration. I find maturity to be much more important. A fairly large immature full sized fowl can be scared to death of a tiny mature bantam. I think you are seeing the importance of maturity. Your mature one seemed to have no problems, your two immature ones are.

Until my immature ones reach a maturity level where they will stand up to the mature flock, usually the hens in the flock, they tend to mostly avoid the older chickens. With mine that's often about the time they start to lay. That's avoiding during the day and the night. My goal in integration is that no one gets hurt. That's it, that is the extent of my goals. They will become on big happy flock in time, but be patient. It takes time.

My suggestion is to let them work it out on their own terms. Do not try to force them into sharing a small space. Give them as much room as you can. If they do not want to sleep on the roosts with the older ones don't force them. Have separated food and water stations, hopefully where they can't all see each other. You can improve the quality of what room you do have by adding clutter. That means having things in there where they can hide under, behind, or over.

Sometimes these things go pretty smoothly, sometimes they are a disaster. Since yours aren't being beat up you are off to a decent start. Good luck with the rest of it.


Aug 16, 2019
Buy a dog crate from argos and put them inside that for few days and leave the dolr open inside the larger cage. This will let the bigger chickens get familiar with them.
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In the Sticks

In the Brooder
Aug 13, 2021
Thanks for the answers. Just to be clear, the new chicks aren`t mixing with the flock. They are in their own small run and coop which is inside the big run, so they can all see each other.
They seem to be venturing out of the little coop a bit now and eating, so that`s good.

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