Combining a new flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by DiveJedi, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. DiveJedi

    DiveJedi In the Brooder

    Hi everyone,

    I am looking at starting my flock by getting some layers from a couple of different sources. What is the best way to combine the hens into a single flock when they are coming from multiple flocks? Should I worry about isolating them first?
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Free Ranging Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    If it were me, I'd put them all together at the same time in the coop where they're going to live. That way one group won't have a chance to claim it as their territory. There is always a chance, of course, that you may be introducing sick chickens to healthy ones. You will have to decide if you have the setup to do a proper quarantine and wish to do so or if you are willing to take that chance.
  3. DiveJedi

    DiveJedi In the Brooder

    I was thinking the same thing. What would a proper quarantine set-up consist of? I had considered using a dog kennel but I have read various time lengths when it comes to quarantining your chickens.
  4. emgrider

    emgrider Chirping

    Aug 18, 2015
    You'd definitely need to quarantine them for at least 30 days. After those 30 days, it were me, I'd have two coops set up so the birdies could see each other and get familiar with each other.
  5. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Free Ranging Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    From what I have read, a proper quarantine is keeping your birds at least 300' apart, using separate equipment for each flock, changing your shoes (at the very least, and preferably your clothes) between flocks for at least 4 weeks. And even then you may still have birds that are carriers and not show symptoms of illness. My thinking is, if you're getting them from sources you trust, where the chickens are housed properly and don't show signs of illness or parasites, you'll probably be OK. As others have said, don't bring home a bird you feel sorry for (the sad, pathetic one in the corner). Chances are, there is something wrong with it.
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!

    That's a tuffy.
    Will all birds be picked up on the same day?

    For a true quarantine, you'd need a separate coop for each source, spaced out 300 feet.

    Any chance you'd rethink it and start with birds from just one flock or get chicks instead.

    I started with a grown flock and brought lice and leg mites home.

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