bloodshed and introduction

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jensenjeffc, Nov 22, 2012.

  1. jensenjeffc

    jensenjeffc Hatching

    Nov 17, 2012
    Fort Collins CO
    OK we are newbies...last Sunday we purchased a flock of four and a coop. All of these hens are the same age about a year and a half. Yesterday I purchased 2 more about 14 months old.

    I brought them home about 8:30 in the morning and kept them in a separate pen next to the main coop until about 3:30. I then added them to the main run. The fighting began immediately. Last night all seemed OK, no blood and they all went into the coop together.

    This morning I witnessed one of the new hens being pined to the ground. I went out to check on them and observed one of the new ones has the back of her comb picked off and bleeding. I have he new ones isolated again.

    Here are the questions...NOW WHAT? Now I'm sure all of you experienced chicken wranglers can come up with at least 15 questions I have. Please answer at will.
  2. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Songster

    Oct 31, 2008
    A day is not nearly long enough to quarantine the new birds or for the groups to become acquainted. Ideally you should isolate new birds for a month to ensure everyone's health. Then have the two groups side by side separated by a fence for another week or two until they really get used to each other.
    This is a problem every time we all get new birds. do some searches on new bird introduction and find a million ways to deal with it. Sometimes it goes better than others. It depends upon the birds attitudes and how many hiding places you have for the picked upon. Please keep any bleeding bird separated. The others WILL kill a bleeding bird.
  3. if possible put the pen with the newbies inside the pen with the original flock, this way they really are in the flock, but can't get hurt.
    I always liked the way of free ranging them together every day for a week. then trying to put them together, when they are free ranging the new ones can get away in need be until the pecking order is established. good luck!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by