chickens getting along

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Xanthfox, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. Xanthfox

    Xanthfox In the Brooder

    Feb 6, 2015
    Hemet, CA
    So we bought 4mh old Wynadottes. Our goal is to have appX. 12 in our flock. Today my wife got me two Rhode island reds. She thought they were 5 month old but i suspect their older. Immediately they started pecking and bullying the Wynadottes. I know the RIR are a more aggressive breed. Do i have to separate? Will they eventually co-exist? What should i do?
  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Crossing the Road

    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
    Give them time and they will. RIR are just trying to establish that they are top of pecking order. When all settles it will be fine. Separate them only if some injury occurs. Then its like a free for all on the injured victim. You will always encounter such issues when introducing new chickens. Ideal is to get all your chickens at one time. Not very practical, for sure.. If you look at my flock, you will see all different types. Had same issues with every addition, but all turned to harmony eventually. No roosters in my flock. The pecking order is a thing with every flock. No way around it.
    1 person likes this.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Integration of new birds can be to house them separated by wire mesh for a few weeks before allowing physical contact.

    Here's some notes I've taken on integration that I found to be very helpful.
    See if any of them, or the links provided at the bottom, might offer some tips that will assist you in your situation:

    Integration of new chickens into flock.

    Consider medical quarantine:
    BYC Medical Quarantine Article
    Poultry Biosecurity
    BYC 'medical quarantine' search

    Confine new birds within sight but physically segregated from older/existing birds for several weeks, so they can see and get used to each other but not physically interact. Integrating new birds of equal size works best.

    For smaller chicks I used a large wire dog crate right in the coop for the smallers. I removed the crate door and put up a piece of wire fencing over the opening and bent up one corner just enough for the smallers to fit thru but the biggers could not. Feed and water inside the crate for the smallers. Make sure the smallers know how to get in and out of the crate opening before exposing them to the olders. this worked out great for me, by the time the crate was too small for the them to roost in there(about 3 weeks), they had pretty much integrated themselves to the olders.

    If you have too many smallers to fit in a crate you can partition off part of the coop with a wire wall and make the same openings for smallers escape.

    The more space, the better. Birds will peck to establish dominance, the pecked bird needs space to get away. As long as there's no blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down, let them work it out. Every time you interfere or remove new birds, they'll have to start the pecking order thing all over again.

    Multiple feed/water stations. Dominance issues are most often carried out over sustenance, more stations lessens the frequency of that issue.

    Places for the new birds to hide out of line of sight and/or up and away from any bully birds.

    Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
    This is good place to start reading:
  4. Xanthfox

    Xanthfox In the Brooder

    Feb 6, 2015
    Hemet, CA
    Thanks everyone for your help. We decided to divide the run in half giving each room but being able to live closely and get use to each other.

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