1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Adding new chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Aussie Ollie, Mar 17, 2015.

  1. Aussie Ollie

    Aussie Ollie New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Oct 23, 2014
    I have 14 8 week old chicks that I have had since they were a day old. They are in a coop with a 16x20 fenced, covered yard. Not sure if it matters, but in case it does, they are: 3 Barred Rocks, 3 Delawares, 4 Cuckoo Marans and 4 Black Sex Links. I brought home 5 chickens the other night...all Orpingtons (which I have read are docile and usually at the bottom of the pecking order). Four hens and a roo...all 1 year old. I have the new ones free ranging the pasture, and they go into our "makeshift" coop and yard at night (it's a 6x6 dog kennel and dog house attached to the outside of the kennel). Once I plug a few holes where the chicks (my original 14) might be able to get out, I would like for them all to free range together during the day. Plausible? In a large pasture (about 150x150), would the older chickens pick on the little ones? Thanks for any help!
     
  2. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

    17,667
    2,945
    451
    Aug 16, 2014
    Yorkshire, UK
    My Coop
    I would wait untill your chicks are fully grown before mixing them together. Waiting untill they are fully grown is the best option as smaller chicks at 8 weeks could easily be harmed or become injured by the larger birds. I find it's always better to wait rather than have a blood bath on your hands. Your new ones that you have brought in should be quarantined too before adding them to existing flock members. A few weeks quarantine should show if they have any diseases or parasites. I like the look but don't touch method for adding members, have them so they can see each other but are seperated by wire. This way they can become aquainted but not injure each other. After a few weeks of this add them together but under supervision so you can jump in if things get too rough or more than the usual pecking order scuffles. Adding extra feed and water stations is also a good idea so no one can be bullied out of eating and drinking. Here is an article on adding new flock members
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=2593-adding-to-your-flock
    Also an article on quarantine https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/...often-underestimated-part-of-raising-chickens

    Good luck with your flock and hope they all get on when you do add them together.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2015
  3. Aussie Ollie

    Aussie Ollie New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Oct 23, 2014
    Thank you, yorkshire! Appreciate the help!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by