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Brooding different aged chicks together, can it be done?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by fluffybumfarm, Apr 23, 2018.

  1. fluffybumfarm

    fluffybumfarm In the Brooder

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    I am just about to embark on a breeding program but am not 100% clear on something and would very much appreciate some advice, please.

    Say I hatched 4 lots of chicks a week apart. Can I keep adding the chicks to the brooder area each week or do I need 4 separate brooders?

    Thanks in advance for your help.
     
    Mraya likes this.
  2. sawilliams

    sawilliams Songster

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    NO. For 1 depending on your space and number of chicks they may need more space. 2 a 3 week old chick is much bigger and more active then a new hatch. Which can lead to pecking issues or smaller chicks getting trampled.

    Though i can't say it wont work, it will have its difficulties and you need to at the least be prepared to seperate.
     
    fluffybumfarm likes this.
  3. Mraya

    Mraya Songster

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    I keep week 1 & 2 together and week 3 and 4 together the older chicks teach the younger chicks what's what.

    This works for me.

    Edit to add: i have 3 brooders and hatch BO'S BR'S and Silkies
    The silkies go together.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2018
    fluffybumfarm likes this.
  4. Lucyluvchickens

    Lucyluvchickens Chirping

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    I've done that before. Not in batches like that, but like I've hatched chicks, and then a couple weeks later I would add a few new chicks. But I'd leave it at that. Adding too many new chicks to your batch *will* cause problems to the younger ones, like pecking and things may get kinda rough between the younger ones and older ones. To answer your question, I would add chicks that are closer to their age (like a month age difference tops), until they get older and can fight back. So maybe having two brooders, one for the younger ones, and one for the older ones. I'm not sure if this really helped cause it was all over the place-sorry! Good luck
     
    fluffybumfarm likes this.
  5. fluffybumfarm

    fluffybumfarm In the Brooder

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    Thank you for your help! :)
     
  6. Mraya

    Mraya Songster

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    Also if I might add I use 2 incubators one for incubating one for hatching. I set a new batch of eggs every Friday in the incubator and for lock down I use the other incubator so each batch hatches a week apart. Week 1 and 2 I find I do not have a problem with any bullying but I would not put a week 1 with a week 3 too great a size difference.
     
    fluffybumfarm likes this.
  7. RWise

    RWise Songster 5 Years

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    I have seen larger chicks trample smaller chicks with only a day dif in the hatch time. The larger chick see's weakness in the newbie, and kills it.
    Good luck!!
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member 5 Years

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    I've had up to 2-3 weeks difference be fine ...and also not fine.
    Hope for the best but prepare for the worst.
    Make sure you have things sized adequately.
     
    Mraya likes this.
  9. Mraya

    Mraya Songster

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    I also believe size is the key my brooders have lots of room and I don't over crowd them also I have more then 1 feeder and water for them.
     
  10. LaurEliz

    LaurEliz Songster

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    I've kept different aged chicks together many times with no issues, but only in small numbers. Keep in mind that older chicks can pick on younger chicks though, sometimes to the point of injury or death. It's also easy for older chicks to trample younger chicks to death too. Keep a close eye on them and make sure there's enough room, food, and water for them all.
     

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