Adding older birds to flock of young pullets and cockeral

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by theuglychick, Aug 3, 2016.

  1. theuglychick

    theuglychick Overrun With Chickens

    1,049
    2,451
    261
    May 3, 2016
    Louisiana
    I've read a lot about integrating young pullets into an existing flock of older birds, but I have a question about doing the opposite.

    I need to integrate three new birds that are 9 months to a year of age into my existing small flock of 13 young 4 week old pullets and one cockeral.

    I know to quarantine the birds for one month on a separate part of the property where the birds will not be able to share airspace. During this time, I plan to deworm using Valbazen, mix in medicated feed to the layer ration to hopefully build some immunity to cocci, which I have dealt with already so I know it's in my coop, and treat for mites just to be safe.

    My question is, what would be the best way to integrate these three older birds (purebred Ameraucanas) into my small and young mixed flock (consisting of light brahmas, andalusians, easter eggers, and cuckoo marans) at the end of the one month quarantine period?
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,664
    7,886
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    It pretty much works the same way......
    ......the main issue with integration is always territoriality over space, food, and water.

    Larger birds sometimes can have an advantage if it comes down to a serious brawl, but pecking order is often settled with more subtle forms of communication.
    Just follow the same rules of an introduction period separate but adjacent enclosures for a few weeks after your quarantine....then lots of space, places to 'hide', and multiple feed/water stations when you finally let them share the same space.
     
  3. theuglychick

    theuglychick Overrun With Chickens

    1,049
    2,451
    261
    May 3, 2016
    Louisiana

    Great info! And thank you for the help. I've opted to not go with three mature birds, but with just 2 slightly older birds (older by about a month or so.)

    Is my quarantine plan sufficient? Or is my deworming and de-licing plan over-kill? This is my first time introducing new birds in a long time and the last time I did it (years ago) I lost one of my older flock birds to some strange disease.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,664
    7,886
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
     
  5. theuglychick

    theuglychick Overrun With Chickens

    1,049
    2,451
    261
    May 3, 2016
    Louisiana

    You said it! We have everything here. I think since they're younger birds that I might just treat for mites and monitor closely during the separation. Thank you again!
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    34,664
    7,886
    596
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    I've heard good things about this service for fecal analysis, tho never used them myself.
    http://www.midamericaagresearch.net/instructions.php
    Might be worth investigating in your situation, as worms are invisible to the naked eye(except round worms and maybe tapes).
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by