chicks in winter/ introducing into big house.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by beavsmom, Dec 4, 2014.

  1. beavsmom

    beavsmom In the Brooder

    Aug 4, 2014
    We have 11 chicks that are 1 month and 12 days old, all feathered out. Want to introduce them in with our older hens,9, and a rooster who is calm.We have the chicks housed in two large crates with an 100 watt bulb in each.They need more room and want
    them to go into the big house, 8X12, it's insulated all around when built.Should we isolate them somewhat from the big girls or not?
    They are feathered out and are healthy.Help!
  2. beavsmom

    beavsmom In the Brooder

    Aug 4, 2014
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    What's your climate?
    They need to be acclimated gradually to the outside temperature...and definitely can't be put right in with the older chickens.

    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, might offer some tips that will assist you in your situation:

    Integration of new chickens to 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:
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2014

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