Advice for integrating

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Mbart83, Feb 24, 2018.

  1. Mbart83

    Mbart83 Chirping

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    I have a flock of 8 hens and then a flock of 4 hens, 3 months younger than the 8, and a rooster that has been with the flock of 4 since hatch day. They are all the same size, the younger girls will be larger than the older. They have been face to face all together free ranging- a little chasing- and they have been in the run together a few times, a few peck marks and some lose feathers, but nothing too serious. It has been about 5-6 weeks if this. The older girls still chase the younger- the roo is fine- the younger girls (all English orpingtons) are so afraid of the older (isa browns and two English orpingtons). I sometimes feel the roo won’t allow the pullets pecking order to be established but I also feel the 4 orpingtons are so docile, they just run whenever an ISA brown comes over ‍♀️


    My question is; when is it ok to leave them all together in the coop and run? I want them to all be together! But I don’t want anyone to get hurt - and I know I am babying them too- so any input is great!
     
    AllenK RGV likes this.
  2. AllenK RGV

    AllenK RGV Chicken Addict

    Excellent question to be asking before integrating them there is an excellent article within the "Learning Center" so click the Articles button up top, then click on the learning center then perform a search for integrating, that led me to this article: https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/integrating-chickens-step-by-step.72815/
    There are more articles on integration this was the first I found.
    Best of luck to you!
     
    Mbart83 likes this.
  3. 17 chickens

    17 chickens Crazy Chicken Math

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    I have found that there is always 1 hen who is the boss and she will teach the pecking order, It looks like like she is being a thug and hurting them but she is letting them know that she is in charge! If you put out treats to keep everyone busy during there meeting they will be fine, I put whole green cabbage heads, ears of corn and even warm oatmeal. If you keep removing them then the this will continue to go on, I know it's hard to watch but they will figure everything out!
    I hope this helps as it works for me and I now have 180 chickens!
     
    lomine, Chelsa'sChicks and Mbart83 like this.
  4. Mbart83

    Mbart83 Chirping

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    Thanks! Do I have to watch?! Ugh! It’s totally all me being so motherly to them- wish I wasn’t sometimes lol

     
  5. Mbart83

    Mbart83 Chirping

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    Thanks! Good read!!!

     
    AllenK RGV likes this.
  6. Chelsa'sChicks

    Chelsa'sChicks Songster

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    I did this same thing a few months ago (exactly having 8 older hens and 4 young hens 1 being a roo with a BO roo that is just older by 2 months). My chickens always free range and are never cooped so the little ones could run if needed, but other then that they should be ok now especially since they have already met and are about the same size.
    I did note that when my rooster (who is younger then my older hens) did mature the hens let him be "the boss" and also they are kinder to some of the other chickens that are on the bottom of the pecking order. I noted my rooster will specifically call to these hens at the bottom of the order and show them food, help them find the hole in the fence to escape (which is now fixed..), ect. The other hens must have noted this also because they do not pick on these hens almost at all now. My rooster treats all the hens kindly and the same.. he is a BO. Hens are 1 RIR, 2 BPR, and 6 Australorps. Depending on how bossy your boss hen is you may see this change also..

    Good Luck! :)
     
    AllenK RGV likes this.
  7. 17 chickens

    17 chickens Crazy Chicken Math

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    Nope just put stuff out to keep them busy and walk away, the more you come to mommy Resucue the more it will keep happening. It's hard not to help but sometimes we have to let our kids figure things out!
    All of my chickens have names and will retire a good life on my farm as they not only help pay the bills but are part of the family too!
     
    AllenK RGV likes this.
  8. AllenK RGV

    AllenK RGV Chicken Addict

    Yep sounds like they are already there with the integration.
     
  9. Mbart83

    Mbart83 Chirping

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    Ok so what kind of stuff should I put out? I suck at this :( lol the Isa Browns are rough! Need some good ideas for things to keep them busy!!!
     
  10. Mbart83

    Mbart83 Chirping

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    Ha! Idk sometimes I am certain the 4 babies will not come back from their panic attacks!
     

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