Advice for integrating young girls with older hens??

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by vjbakke, Jun 4, 2012.

  1. vjbakke

    vjbakke Songster

    529
    0
    129
    Mar 21, 2011
    MN
    We have 5 hens that are just over a year old. 4 RSL and one Dom. We also have 4 EE that are almost 9 wks old. Right now that little ones are in the old dog house with a make shift fenced run about 2 ft apart from the big girls 12 X12 run. They see each other, however I haven't seen them checking each other out as much as I thought they would. Maybe their not close enough.Anyways, what is the best way to integrating them? I am thinking of waiting until the little ones are a few more weeks older so they will be 11-12 weeks old. We don't and can't free range.
    One issue we may have is that the new girls don't use any roosts, they have one in their house but they sleep in the floor behind it at night.

    Any advice would be great! I want to this to go as smoothly as possible.
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

    43,879
    27,640
    1,032
    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    I put my younger chicks into the back of my coop with food, water, and roosts, and fence them off with that plastic orange or black safety fencing ( or some other temporary fence) for about 1-2 weeks. By the end of that period they have been close to each other. Then I open it up and both groups start to mingle, but the young ones stay in their area at night. Little by little they start "sneaking out with the big girls until they feel comfortable enough to hang together or roost at night. The 2 groups may stay fairly separate, but with time they will be together. Just watch for any excessive pecking or fighting.
     
  3. vjbakke

    vjbakke Songster

    529
    0
    129
    Mar 21, 2011
    MN
    Ok, I don't have a way to separate them in the big coop, it won't work with it's design. I could fence them inside the run and take them to the small coop at night for a while so they can see each other closer.
     
  4. Achickenwrangler#1

    Achickenwrangler#1 Songster

    2,431
    76
    183
    Aug 7, 2011
    west virginia
    When you do put them together do it at night. With them sleeping on the floor still it might eliminate any squabble over perches, just make sure they have a 'poop free' zone to sleep under. Maybe you could switch it up some and add two new ones at a time, and see how it goes. Is there anyway you could move the make shift run close enough to open into the main run? They could get used to each other that way.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: