Adding Adults to flock...should I?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by AmeliaRB, Jan 23, 2019.

  1. AmeliaRB

    AmeliaRB In the Brooder

    13
    8
    29
    Apr 1, 2018
    Lubbock, Texas
    My Coop
    Hello, my flock is now down to 2 hens. My plan was to purchase some chicks this Spring; however, our country vet recently contacted us about a local FFA program giving away young laying hens. My run is probably 10x15 and I have the set up to safely introduce maybe 3-4 new chickens. My current 2 are a Wyandotte and an Americana. They are giving away both hybrid and pure breeds. I am really at a loss in this decision. Please give me your thoughts. Thanks!
     
    DobieLover and Ducksandchickens like this.
  2. What breeds are the existing hens? You will need to divide the coop in half or buy one dog crate for each new hen so that they can acclimate to the other hens and to their new home. Personally I think that the hens would be fine without others, but it's all up to you with what you decide. Good luck!
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    22,551
    8,252
    647
    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    The only thing that would slow me down would be biosecurity concerns. I don't know how you feel about that. Not everyone quarantines, especially if they trust the source. If those chickens have been isolated and the person watching them would recognize a disease or parasite and was honest enough to tell you about it they pretty much have been in quarantine. Can you quarantine? Would you?

    Another issue is how attached are you to your current two? Are you considering replacing them anyway? How devastated would you be if something happened to them? It is also possible your two hens have a flock immunity the new ones don't and they will infect the new ones. The risk is two way.
     
    aart and EggSighted4Life like this.
  4. DobieLover

    DobieLover Easily distracted by chickens

    3,091
    21,113
    932
    Jul 23, 2018
    Apalachin, NY
    My Coop
    Where are you located in the world? You can include that general information in your profile so it displays under your stats.

    You didn't mention how large your coop is. Can you provide it's dimensions in feet x feet? Pictures of your coop and run would be very helpful.

    Here is a link to how I integrated 3 pullets in with an existing flock of 9 birds:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/well-dang-that-was-easy.1281000/

    Integrating in the cold weather can be difficult, but 'cold' is a relative term. I would not want to deal with 2 coops in the dead of our winter where we are frequently in single or below zero night time temperatures and everything is frozen.

    Quarantine is also important. Do you have a garage you could use to quarantine the new birds? Or some other place you can keep them away from your existing 2 for 3 to 4 weeks before you start the 'look don't touch' phase of the integration? I didn't really have that capability as you can read in my post so I did a pseudo quarantine but everything worked out fine.

    Integrating new birds can involve a fair amount of work but if you are up to it, it can certainly be rewarding. I enjoyed it.
     
  5. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    Hello. If you are set up for look no touch introduction then go for it. No need to quarantine because without a total Bio secure quarantine diseases spread Anyways. Best wishes. I'd just do it.
     
  6. AmeliaRB

    AmeliaRB In the Brooder

    13
    8
    29
    Apr 1, 2018
    Lubbock, Texas
    My Coop
     
  7. AmeliaRB

    AmeliaRB In the Brooder

    13
    8
    29
    Apr 1, 2018
    Lubbock, Texas
    My Coop
     
  8. AmeliaRB

    AmeliaRB In the Brooder

    13
    8
    29
    Apr 1, 2018
    Lubbock, Texas
    My Coop
     
  9. AmeliaRB

    AmeliaRB In the Brooder

    13
    8
    29
    Apr 1, 2018
    Lubbock, Texas
    My Coop
    My look don’t touch would be a huge dog crate sitting outside the run. It’s what I have done to separate a broody butt from the flock in the past, however, this time it would be 3-4 chickens instead of 1. I figured it would be ok for a few weeks. It’s not ideal in my opinion.
     
  10. AmeliaRB

    AmeliaRB In the Brooder

    13
    8
    29
    Apr 1, 2018
    Lubbock, Texas
    My Coop
    I’m in West Texas. The temps range from 50’s -high 60’s most of the time. It does get into freezing temps at night. My coop is smallish. I think 3-4 birds would roost comfortably but no more than that. It would be easy to add another roosting bar and laying box. I’d say the sleeping area is 3 x 3. Maybe a tad larger. Wish I had bigger but it is what it is.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: