Combining Flocks...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Brillig, Aug 15, 2016.

  1. Brillig

    Brillig Out Of The Brooder

    May 20, 2016
    Hi Y'all...

    I have six chickens (Orpington and Easter Eggers) that are about 2 months old and I have eight chicks (Orpington, Easter Eggers and a Cochin) that are about four weeks old...Is it safe to combine them, or should I wait for the younger ones to grow a bit more???

    BTW...The Cochin came from an Ebay egg and looks like it may be a bantam, even though I bought standard eggs...Either that, or it's just a really tiny bird, but it's about 2/3rds the size of the others...
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    It’s possible you could just put them together and have no problems whatever. It’s possible you could have a disaster. You are dealing with living animals, no one can give you any guarantees.

    I have no idea where you are keeping them or what your facilities look like. It’s extremely hard to give any specific advice. I’d treat it like a standard integration, give them all the room you can when you put them together. Before you put them together, house them side by side for at least a week across a fence of some kind so they can see each other but not attack each other. Provide a few separated eating and drinking stations so they can eat without challenging the older ones. When you let them together, do it on a day you can check up on them, probably a weekend for most of us.

    I once had a group of 8-week-olds kill a 1-week-old chick that got into their pen. I regularly integrate 5-week-olds into my main flock, often with both adults and young chicks in it. I currently have 17-week-olds, 11-week-olds, and a broody hen with 4 week olds roaming with my adults and sharing a coop. You can integrate chicks of all ages with other chickens but there are risks involved. Treating yours like a standard integration will minimize those risks.

    Good luck!
  3. SueT

    SueT Overrun With Chickens

    May 27, 2015
    SW MO
  4. Brillig

    Brillig Out Of The Brooder

    May 20, 2016
    Thanks SueT...Had read that already, but wanted a few more specifics...I think Ridgerunner confirmed what my gut was telling me to do...Thanks guys!!!
  5. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    If that's all your flock, no adult chickens, you will probably have no issues when you combine the two groups. But you'd be a lot safer if you take it in steps. Let them observe one another through a barrier for a few days before letting them mingle. And make certain you are providing plenty of space and surfaces for them to evade any would-be bullies. Also, make sure you have more than one feeder.
  6. Norzam

    Norzam Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 26, 2016
    My Coop
    Since it is between 1 & 2 month old flocks...My personal opinion is that they are ok to be combine together. But expect a confrontation. It is a must to have enough run space for them & a separate feeder & waterer. I've also gamble myself to include 2 groups of 2 month old with a 5 month rooster. Takes time for them to mingle together.

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