Am I crazy?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kmdsparrow, Sep 12, 2010.

  1. kmdsparrow

    kmdsparrow Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 10, 2010
    I was out on a day trip for my birthday with my DH and when we stopped by a county fair and saw some day old chicks. They were just so cute! I came home with three. What's the advice for eventually introducing them to my small, but growing [​IMG] flock?
  2. TigerLilly

    TigerLilly I failed Chicken Math

    Jul 18, 2010
    Central Florida
    RESEARCH! Seriously, read all you can about everything chicken--this place has LOTS of great info.
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    No more crazy than am I. The ONLY reason I didn't buy chicks at the feed store this past trip for feed and oyster shell was because I have six newly hatched chicks in the brooder and 7 more eggs in an incubator. PLUS two more sets of six eggs to be shipped to me.

    And I've bid on some hatching eggs..... [​IMG]

    But the way you eventually add them to your flock is this:

    They'll be in the brooder til they're about 8 weeks old. Thereabouts. Fully feathered.

    Then you have some place to put them separate from the rest of the flock, either in half the coop, or in another "grow out" coop thing. If it's the latter, this will be inside the regular run you've already got, put a temporary run fence around it for a little yard for them alone, and their own feeder and waterer.

    Let them grow "out" there until they are 12 or 16 weeks old, whichever you feel is closest to the size of the original flock or by their behavior as they mature. They will be able to see, hear, smell and even chest bump through the temporary fence with the others. So by the time you take away the temporary fence, the older ones will already be used to them, know they aren't "strangers" and there will be much less pecking order bother. The younger ones will be lower status, but the older ones won't attack them.

    Good luck!
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2010
  4. sixxchixx

    sixxchixx Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 10, 2010
    Escondido, CA

    how do you know when they are mature enough? i have 4 13 weekers and 2 hens. i tried to integrate them this past weekend and they did great until nighttime... i have a large "chicken yard" and just let them hang out all 6 together both sat and sun but as soon as night fell the babies freaked out!!! they couldnt get any closer to me (litterally) i had one on my shoulder one in my arms and one trying with all her might to get on my head. it seems like the 2 hens dont really care about them as there was minimal pecking (they have been in a "growout" cage for 2 weeks) but the little ones were absolutely terrified of being left in the coop by themselves (without me)

    are they just not "mature" enough? or should i just let them figure it out on their own (with the hens) and not worry about them until morning?

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by