chick integrating question....HELP they are coming tonight!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ColoradoPeeps, Aug 26, 2014.

  1. ColoradoPeeps

    ColoradoPeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We currently have 6 2week old chicks. My husband is going to pick up 4 3week old chicks tonight (now who has chicken fever ???[​IMG]). I was wondering how to integrate them. I have read that when you get birds from somewhere else (in this case Craigslist) that you need to quarantine them, but I have also heard that integrating chicks together while they are young is better. What should I do?
     
  2. DCchicken

    DCchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    yes quarantine. Buy a very large crate and put some pine shavings. They should live in that away from your other birds for 30-60 days. If anyone of the new birds sneeeze, they need to be culled (all of them). Biosecurity is very serious. Feed the newest birds (the ones in quarantine) last. Make sure to use hand sanitizer and change your clothes before visiting the other chicks that are not in quarantine.
     
  3. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    Your question is the same as picking which foot to be shot in. There is not a real winner in either choice you have. If you mix them now, they will get along fine as a group when older. If you quarantine them your other birds will be safe, but the two groups won't mesh quite as nicely for quite awhile and you will most likely see it in your flock every day. The term paradox seems to be at play here.

    The answer is to try and plan your additions, (I know, chicken math) and take such things into account. But that is not what you have on hand here, so… choose one. Knowing up front the chance you are imposing on your flock, or the split pecking order you will have. (Two groups with one being the superior, and then another pecking order in each group. Around here the 'loosing' group is treated like dirt, kept from feed and water and treats. I have to use two or more feeders, waterers, and throw treats into the cheap seats for the odd man out group of birds.

    Best to you and your birds,

    RJ
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    [​IMG]

    At that young age, I wouldn't worry about quarantining. Buy birds from a healthy environment, don't "resuce" birds from a bad situation, and you really should be good to go. If you don't do a proper quarrantine, it's the same as doing none at all. Proper means no shared air space, changing shoes from one coop to another, sanitizing hands, etc.

    Personally, I'd just put them all in the brooder together.
     
  5. Demidog

    Demidog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I got my chicks in 4 batches a few days/weeks apart. I kept the new ones for a few days in a separate box to check they were OK, then i just stuck them in with the rest. They got on fine. I also treated them all with antibiotics in their water for 14 days. I've still got them all, they're big and healthy now at 2-3 months old. We're going to get some more but these new ones will be quarantined because they will be point of lay, not new day old chicks, so I'm assuming they'll be more likely to bring infection in. Plus they'll likely fight with my flock so they'll need to be introduced slowly.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2014
  6. DCchicken

    DCchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just read about a lady that bought eggs, hatched them and then integrated the chicks into the rest of her flock. The problem was that she introduced MG into the flock even using eggs. So she ended up having to kill the entire flock.

    Biosecurity is not something to just ignore just because they are young. If you don't learn to properly quarantine when you only have a few, what happens when your flock grows to be over 100?

    It's not that difficult to quarantine. It just takes a little more time of your day. Even healthy looking chicks can bring horrible diseases. And don't be fooled into thinking that big hatcheries are immune. TSC was selling chicks with Samonella this year that they got from Privett Hatchery in NM.

    Just quarantine and be safe.
     
  7. Demidog

    Demidog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, it happens. There is definitely risk involved when introducing new chickens.
     
  8. DCchicken

    DCchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I actually think it is more devastating to small backyard flocks where the owner may personally connect with each chicken. With very large flocks, it is just part of owning chickens to lose one every once in a while, especially to predators or even the pecking order. But with small backyard flocks, death and disease is more painful. I know of one lady that bought a chicken at a swap and didn't quarantine. She just plopped it into the coop with her 4 other ones. All got sick and eventually died. She never really recovered from the loss.
     

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