combinding chicks??

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by bevkaysmith, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. bevkaysmith

    bevkaysmith New Egg

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    Apr 16, 2012
    I have just gotten some chicks that are about 4 wks old.. Can I add smaller and younger ones with them? OR do I need to keep them apart till older? They will be together as one flock .
    Thanks!
     
  2. LaynaDon95

    LaynaDon95 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 18, 2012
    Texas
    It depends. How old are the younger ones? That's kind of a big stretch. Even if the older ones aren't aggressive they can accidentally trample the littler ones. I've put in day olds with 2 1/2 week olds and they are still living happily together (now 4 and 5 weeks old) I wouldn't recommend anything past a 3 week difference, but that's pushing it. I was really nervous adding the day olds to the 2 1/2 week olds. That being said, it could conceivably work, but you would have to keep a very close eye on them until you were sure they would be okay.
     
  3. bevkaysmith

    bevkaysmith New Egg

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    Apr 16, 2012
    Thanks .. younger will be a few days old.. Guess I need t another spot for them..
     
  4. gardendufus

    gardendufus Chillin' With My Peeps

    I can only tell you about my experiences. I put day olds in with 3 week olds (I was very careful to watch them for the first couple of hours). They did beautifully. The chicks made momma's out of the 3 week olds, cuddling under their wings, etc.

    Then I put day olds in with the now 5 week olds and the younger 2 week olds. The 2 week olds were fine with them. The 5 week olds would chase them around and peck at them. They are now in the coop with everyone but in a chicken wire brooder. It has been about 1 1/2 weeks since the introduction. Every night I put the middle aged chicks in the brooder with the babies so that they will continue to become a '4' flock. During the day I go into the coop, prop up one side of the brooder so the babies can go out and come into it when they feel threatened. It is obvious they prefer to be around the middle aged birds and they still spend a lot of time in the brooder. But they do make forays out into the main coop. The older birds are not friendly to them, but they no longer chase them down to peck them. They WILL peck them if they come too close, but they don't spend a lot of energy finding them anymore.

    I used to watch them the whole time, but now that I know they can get back into the brooder whenever they want I just prop it open in the morning and leave them alone to sort it out. I still lock the middle age chicks in with them at night. During the day if the babies are out in the coop they search out the middle chicks to spend time with them. This works as long as the big birds aren't around.

    Good luck with your integration.
     

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