My chicks will be 7 weeks old Wednesday. I've had them in a brooder, in the coop. When they were 4 weeks old I shut off the heat lamp and opened up the brooder. They've been separated from the hens with chicken wire. Last Friday I took down the chicken wire and they started mingling. The chicks and hens seem to be getting along. No fights over who's the queen of the coop, no fights around the feeders. So far only one chick has ventured out into the yard. But, the number of eggs I've gotten has dropped 20% in the past 2 days. Could the hens be nervous, or something, and not laying because of the chicks? If it weren't for the eggs I'd be pretty pleased with myself. All the chicks I got seem to be happy, healthy, I didn't lose any, and otherwise everybody seems to get along.