Dilemma- Need Your Thoughts!

JSossong

Chirping
5 Years
Mar 8, 2014
162
9
78
Western PA
So here's my thoughts, tell me yours.

I ordered 12 barred rocks from a small town feed supply store a few months ago. When I called about a month ago to find out the status I was told they wouldn't be getting them in until May. Of course I couldn't wait that long. I called every Tractor Supply in the area to find out who had what breeds and ended up purchasing 12 red sex links (one of which died on day 6). It has now been 3 weeks and I have 11 thriving chicks. They are growing fast and are seemingly very healthy.

I just realized today that I never cancelled my first order of the barred rocks, which got me thinking. I've had such a good ride with my other chicks these past 3 weeks...with an almost complete coop able to house many more birds why not get the 12 extra chicks and expand my flock?

I'm a first time chick raiser and super eager and excited about the thought of having a 23 bird flock. I need honest opinions though to if this is a good idea or am I rushing things and getting in over my head with 23 chickens. I also don't know a lot about adding new chickens to an already stable flock. Will adding 12 barred rocks to my 11 sexlinks disrupt the flow? And how do I go about socializing them?

Need opinions and advice please and thank you!
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
Premium member
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
36,683
4,863
556
Ohio
I would vote yes I think, 23 is not going to be that much more work than 11 so ...IF ... if you are willing to place hens if you decide it was a bad idea, (young laying hens are usually pretty easy to place), besides, you may lose some birds or wind up with roosters etc, always nice to have replacements ready... and you may find you like a mixed flock or BRs better than the RSLs ...
If you have the space ... you are sure your coop is big enough (with 23 chickens lets round up and say it should be around 100sqf or about 10x10 with a run 2.5 times that) or better, even bigger if they are going to be locked in a lot in the winter.

With combining the chicks, they will be far enough apart in age you will have to wait until the little ones are about the size of the bigger ones, and then do it gradually, usually a period of time, several weeks of seeing but not touching through a fence works well, can you divide your coop in half or have a pen/cage inside the coop for the younger ones? The Learning Center has a nice article on integrating flocks (after the quarantine part) www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=2593-adding-to-your-flock
 

JSossong

Chirping
5 Years
Mar 8, 2014
162
9
78
Western PA
@Kelsie2290 Thanks for the advice! I've been going back and forth with my decision but I think I've finally decided to just do it. I'm going a little chick crazy over here lol. My coop should be finished in about a week- perfect timing to move my older ones in and have a space for my newer ones. I'm so excited about the thought of 12 new chicks! Hopefully it all goes well.

I'll definitely have to read up a bit more on integrating 2 flocks. Thanks for providing a link!
 

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