Anyone have luck intergrating 8 wk chicks with 1 year old flock?

hawtchick

Songster
11 Years
Jun 11, 2008
226
0
119
New Hampshire
I am just curious about this. We have 12 8-9 week old chicks, and our existing flock, which has become very depleted is 5, 1 year old hens, who are very docile.
For the past 2 weeks, the baby chicks have been side by side the hens in a separated part of the run, but space is at a premium for the chicks, and they are running out of room in the jumbo dog kennel we are using for their coop.
Just wondering what other have had for experiences.
We have had to combine flocks before, but I have always waited until they were bigger, but I don't think we can.
Any suggestions would be very welcome.
I do not want any harm to come to our flock, that is why I am asking before we do ANYTHING!!

thank you!

Jess
 
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damselfish

Songster
Mar 8, 2008
971
105
249
Southwest Missouri
We did this this spring, with 15 8-week-old chicks and the two surviving 1 year old hens from a dog attack.

It did work, there was no blood drawn, just some standard pecking-order stuff. We had enough room so that we were able to let the hens into the chick space for a few supervised visits before we went vice versa.

We also left the chick space open and available so the chicks could go there at night until they were ready to compete for the big girl roosts. It was hard to ignore the "thump" noises as young chickens got knocked off the big roost for several nights, but it all worked out in the end.

Come to think of it, one of the big girls now roosts in the guinea coop...oh nevermind, I'm rambling now.

Good luck, I think it will be fine.

Edited: for operator error.
 
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hawtchick

Songster
11 Years
Jun 11, 2008
226
0
119
New Hampshire
Thank you very much for those links.
It seems as though I am on the right track, and may try is in the next 2 weeks. I will have to report back. I wish we had more space, but it is what it is. My hens no longer seem terribly interested in the chicks while side by side separated by only chicken wire, so maybe thats a good thing.
I was also going to make some separate and lower roosts on the coop for the chicks, as there is NO ay they could reach the ones for the hens, and they would be unsafe for them anyhow.
Thanks again.
jess
 

noitulover

Songster
10 Years
Apr 23, 2009
780
2
141
Central Virginia
mine are around 8 weeks and we put them in with the rest of the flock...

there was a day or two of slight pecking order stuff, but after that there were really no issues...

they're roosting with the big girls and everything's fine!
 

briteday

Songster
11 Years
Dec 16, 2008
1,200
70
216
Northern NV
We kept our chicks separated from the 1-year olds with chicken wire for a few weeks. Then we allowed them to free range together, supervised by a human with water hose in hand. Any time one of the big girls dared to pick on a chick they were immediately hosed. That only took a few hours over a couple of days. Take a good book and a lawn chair along with the hose. Now it seems that the chicks enjoy being out under the bushes, pecking away. And the older girls keep their distance, mostly hanging out around the perimeter of the yard.

At night they all have their special places to roost. The little ones tend to take the lower spots, but not always. There's an occasional "push and shove" with an older girl, but nothing really bad.
 

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