adding chicks to existing flock...will they kill them?

crazy4eggsJulie

Songster
10 Years
Mar 15, 2009
392
7
139
We have 6 chickens that are 3 months old and 22 chicks that are 1 month. There is a huge difference in size. I have them all out in the coop but the babies are separated off with chicken wire. When they stick their little heads through it to peck at the shavings, our cochin (who is otherwise very gentle) runs to attack them! I'm afraid to let them out....will she kill them or is she just planning to peck them? I can't bring myself to do it to find out.
 

joedie

Songster
10 Years
Mar 17, 2009
1,492
10
161
SW Indiana
I would wait until they are about the same size first. They really can't defend themselves very well at this point and can get hurt!
 

jrleader99

Songster
10 Years
Mar 24, 2009
188
0
119
Salem County, New Jersey
I just combined three groups together - 19, 8 and 7 week old chicks. They have been in the same coop (visible) for about 4-5 weeks. I had the 8 and 7 week olds in separate dog crates but in the coop with the bigger ones. About a week ago I started letting them mingle while I was in there just to make sure there were not going to be too much fighting. And just this week I have left them all together and they are doing fine. Now don't get me wrong there is still some pecking but they are doing well. They do get the opportunity to free range during the day so they are not confined so that may be helping.

Now my only issue is trying to count all of them (22) at the end of the night. It was much easier when I only had to count the bigger ones (10) and knew where the little ones were. Last night myself and one of our friends was counting them and kept coming up 2 short. Well I finally found one hiding under some others and then had to craw into the open dog crate with roosts and found the last one hiding back there.

Now my only issue is the number of roos (at least 8 of the 22) that I have and what I want to do with them - Craigslist or freezer heaven???
 

georgialee

Songster
10 Years
Apr 9, 2009
2,399
11
191
Knoxville, TN
I would wait a bit longer until they're closer in size (maybe another month or so). There WILL be pecking to establish the pecking order. I added 2 speckled sussex in with my 18 other chooks and they are on the very bottom despite the fact that they are bigger than my bantams.
 

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