combining flocks

chica-z

In the Brooder
11 Years
Sep 23, 2008
81
0
39
Northern WI
Right now I've got 7 hens (about 25 wks old) and I'm picking up 8 more 15 wk olds on Friday. I have a good tight coop and run area, the run is secure enough that I can leave one group out there and put one group in the coop. The 7 have been free ranging in the afternoon, so do I put the 8 "newbies" in the coop for a while so they know where home is and then combine the two? The 7 have started laying also...do I just set up a temporary nest in the run for them? How do I make this the least stressful for everybody?
 

debilorrah

The Great Guru of Yap
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Aug 25, 2008
39,693
122
423
The Carpal Tunnel Rehab Center
Aboslutely YES. Keep them seperate but visible to each other for at least 2 weeks. This worked so well for us. We had 6 hens a 1 roo, and then bought 1 week old chicks. At 4 weeks we put them in a brooder that was visible to the other chickens, but closed up. Then last weekend we cut a small hole in the wire so they could go in an out as they wanted. Now, at 8 weeks, the hatch stays open 24/7 and the chicks and other chickens are getting along fine. No pecking, no bleeding, no fights. It is awesome!!!!!
 

gritsar

Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!
12 Years
Nov 9, 2007
28,906
239
421
SW Arkansas
chica-z, your plan sounds workable to me with one exception. You are not getting day olds from a hatchery, your getting 15 week olds. You'll need to isolate them first; as far away as possible from your current chickens in case they come bearing illness. After that I don't see why your plan wouldn't work.
 

my first peepers

Songster
11 Years
Jul 9, 2008
244
2
119
South Western VT
I have read some terrible stories on BYC about people getting new chickens and making their own sick! So you should definitely quarantine for 30 days...there is a sticky thread about biosecurity that is worth reading!
Good luck and enjoy your new birds!
 

chica-z

In the Brooder
11 Years
Sep 23, 2008
81
0
39
Northern WI
I have nowhere to separate them, unless they stay in the coop for a full 30 days. The older ones would have to be kept out in the covered run area. I guess it would work, as long as the newbies didn't feel too cramped. There would be 8 birds in a 8x8 coop 24/7...is that enough space for a short quarantine?
I'm pretty sure they are healthy, but I REALLy don't want to get my current girls sick either. That would be terrible! Thanks for bringing it up!
 

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