Adding older hens to new ones?Advice Please!


In the Brooder
8 Years
Mar 25, 2011
A lady has offered me six chickens. She wants them dead or gone. Eek. Currently I have a flock of ten 8-9wk olds. Could I just stick the hen's in? Or no? Is there some secret advice, or precaution? Please, advice. Mary
First, you must quarantine the new ones for 30 days. Keep them as far away from the old ones as possible. After quarantine is over, put the new ones near the old ones, but don't let them actually come in contact with each other. I divide my run in half and put what I call the "chick shack" in the half where the new birds are going. The shack is just a box made out of plywood that my husband put together for me. It's ugly, but it works. After a couple of weeks of this introduction I let them free range together. Then after about a month or so of that I wait until the old hens have gone in the coop to roost at night, and then I take the new hens and put them in the henhouse. Then I remove the chick shack and open up the run to its full size. I've been introducing new hens this way for years, and it's always worked for me. Good luck.
Thanks! Why do you need to quarantine them? If they look okay to me from seeing them in the lady's yard, can they carry over diseases or something? (a month is a long time for them to be coopless... Or is it?) More advice is wanted! Thanks!
"...can they carry over diseases or something?" You just nailed it right there.

They can bring a strain of something in that yours are not ready for. Which is why, when visiting other chickens that are not part of your clock, many recommend you do not wear those same shoes into your flock's living quarters.
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Don't think I can help you on this one, but I'm wondering too. How do ya'll do this?

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