Adding more chickens/chicks to my chicken

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by NewbeeDoo, Mar 1, 2013.

  1. NewbeeDoo

    NewbeeDoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 1, 2013
    We recently "rescued" a fully grown barred rock hen, however, we've never owned chickens before! We wanted to start a flock, however, we don't know how to add to it! Can we add new chicks or are we better off getting it with a rooster...any advice would be helpful. I read your article on it, however, I didn't know if there would still be a pecking order with only having one bird. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks!!
  2. Doubleyolker

    Doubleyolker Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 17, 2012
    welcome from Colorado! You will get great advice here. I have 6 girls who are 34 weeks old and lay pretty much every day. We have one barred rock and she is one of my favorites. good luck and have fun
    1 person likes this.
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    An adult bird will attack chicks or younger birds if they are simply brought home and put in the coop with her. It works best if they are raised in their own pen alongside the older bird once they are old enough to go outside.

    Getting a rooster is a personal choice. They can be a real hassle unless you are familiar with rooster behavior and how to deal with one. Also, only one hen with a rooster is going to get way to much "attention" from him and if she is not inclined to go broody then she won't sit and hatch any eggs anyway. If she does happen to go broody and successfully hatch out a batch of chicks then you will need to have a plan for all the little roosters that hatch. Unless one is prepared to deal with that it's usually easier to buy sexed chicks from a hatchery or breeder.
    1 person likes this.
  4. strling

    strling New Egg

    Mar 2, 2013
    I only have one hen and am getting 10 baby chicks and am not sure how to introduce her to the babies? Right now we have her inside because an eagle killed the other hen that was in our coop and it needs to be repaired. We get the chicks next week so any help would be great.
  5. 4 the Birds

    4 the Birds Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 15, 2010
    Westfield, Indiana
    We seem to always be surprised when one of our chicks turns out to be a rooster. Even the best hatheries are usually 90-95% correct with the sexing. If you can separate them for a week or two in the coop/run area then that would be good. You will want to mother them in your garage or basement until they are at least 6 weeks of age. At that point you can introduce them to the adult hen out in the coop. If you don't have space to keep them apart for a few weeks then give some bread pieces as you put them together.

    Here is a group of 6 week olds out in the coop. They are separated from the flock for another few weeks. All do just fine!
  6. NewbeeDoo

    NewbeeDoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 1, 2013
    Thank you all so much for your help! The advice on this site has been invaluable and I don't know how I would have done this otherwise!

    Just an update, in case someone is reading this thread and wondering what the outcome is (I don't like it when I read something like this and don't hear the ending!) took us about 2 months to complete our coop and in the mean time our hen was free ranging most of the day and then put in her make-shift coop at night. A friend donated 6 3-month old pullets to us! While we were at the "baby thing" I decided to get 2 more Black Copper Marans as there's a local breeder here that offered them the same age! Ironically enough, DH and I decided NO roosters and as soon as we showed up, my husband spotted one he wanted! LOL! So we ended up with an Ameraucana roo...super sweet disposition!

    Well, doing the sneak-her-in-the-henhouse-at-night-trick did NOT work for us! The smallest (a turkey) about got killed and our hen was angry, just paced the pen all day (I suppose wanting out to free range), so we let her out...a couple weeks later checked a "baby"...LICE!!!! Apparently the rooster had lice!!!

    So later that same day our original BR got sick...apparently with Foul Pox and Cocci :( Sad, the day we got the med for her, we went out and she was gone...apparently a hawk must have picked her up! What are the chances?!?!

    Moral of the story is, next time, I think I'd go the chick route...I've learned more than I ever wanted to know these last couple months about chicken disease! Also I would get them vaccinated if that's an option for Cocci, if they're going to free range...I was and am still aiming for organic eggs, however, with our summer here being so rainy and a perfect environment for parasites, I think that it's worth it! 3 months seemed to be an okay age to introduce them (they were really good at getting away from the fat lady, for the most part) but I think I'd leave them in sight, but apart for several weeks first.

    Hope this helps someone else out in my same perdicament!

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