adding pullets to the flock?

rlephoto

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 25, 2012
30
0
22
Folks,
We have 6 adult full size hens and 2 half grown bantams in our 6 ft x 6 ft coop with a fairly large wooded run. We have had the chicken tractor in the run with six 7-8 week old pullets in it during the day for about a week. Is it too soon to let the pullets loose in the run to join the others in our flock? When we put them in the brooder they look so bored.

Thanks for any help,
Randy
 

cackleberrycam

Songster
6 Years
Sep 28, 2013
1,463
95
168
You should not introduce them until they are at least 12 weeks old.
Introducing them to the flock:
One thing you can do is to separate your coop into two parts using chicken wire so that the established hens can interact with the new ones and then when you actually introduce them by separating the chicken wire they have already established a pecking order. You may also want to introduce them to the flock by bringing them in at night, so that when the established hens wake up in the morning and the new ones are with them, they will not realize that they are new comers.

Cackleberrycam
 
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Judy

Crowing
Premium member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
523
448
South Georgia
You could try it, with supervision. Sometimes there is only a few half interested pecks and sometimes it is all out war; you just don't know til you try. If you can let everyone out into a larger space, maybe your back yard, for the integration, it has a better chance of working. Another method is put them together on the roost, by hand, well after dark. If you do it during the day. try to have distractions: treats, new objects to explore, places to hide or jump on, etc.
 

rc4u

Songster
6 Years
Feb 3, 2014
337
32
139
when I have done this I always did it when outside in the morning as the older hens are looking for food right away and the little ones will just get seen and if the others are busy they will see them and as long as they arnt in there food area it should be fine as it is at my place...
 

rlephoto

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 25, 2012
30
0
22
So it looks like we'll wait a little while longer before we introduce the pullets to the adults. This morning the adults were fighting over nesting spots in the coop. I dropped in 3 unused bee boxes and some straw. Later each new nesting box had an egg in it.
 

Judy

Crowing
Premium member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
523
448
South Georgia
This morning the adults were fighting over nesting spots in the coop. I dropped in 3 unused bee boxes and some straw. Later each new nesting box had an egg in it.
Now, that's a sign of a good chicken keeper, IMO! A little improvisation and imagination can go a long way toward happy chickens without wasting a bunch of money!
 

rlephoto

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 25, 2012
30
0
22
So after more than a week staying in the chicken tractor inside the chicken yard the pullets were introduced to the main coop last night. Yes they were a little scared. 5 of them perched on the lower perch, the other one jumped right up with the adult chickens.

This morning it was 43 degrees outside, the adults ran right outside to find apples, overgrown flowering kale and crumbles. The six 8 week old pullets stayed in the coop for 5 minutes after the adults left. The pullets came out and did just fine with the six busy adults.


The gray pullets are Cream Legbars, the two black ones are Black Stars and the other one is a Red Star.
 
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