Excluded, picked on hen.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Mouse234, May 22, 2016.

  1. Mouse234

    Mouse234 New Egg

    1
    0
    7
    May 22, 2016
    Hi all, We are new to keeping chickens and have a question regarding adding new chickens to the flock.
    A month ago we purchased 4 chickens from a battery farm and two weeks later we added 2 new chickens, one has been accepted but the other is being constantly pecked and excluded to the point where it will not enter the coop at night but will instead stay outside in a dirt hole, I have to carry it into the coop, we don't think it is laying either. Are there any pointers to getting it excepted by the others hens? Thanks in advance for any help :)
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

    17,261
    5,202
    476
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    Time, and make sure your coop is big enough, and there are extra roosts. There's always a bottom bird. If they are ex battery hens than they probably lack some social skills and more than likely are somewhat traumatised. It can take months sometimes before the bottom hen feels comfortable and knows where it's safe to be. Provide places for hens to get up on, under and into so that they can feel safer and can gain some confidence. Things like chairs, tables, logs, large buckets, and extra roost poles to name a few. I'm sure the simple act of sleeping on a roost is foreign to them. They need some adjustment period.
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    10,226
    3,283
    461
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    It all depends on how much time and effort you want to put into the project of getting new hens accepted. It can be tedious and take weeks.

    How quickly a hen adapts to a new flock also depends on her own temperament and self confidence level. I introduced a rescued hen into my flock of nineteen, and she took a month to fully integrate. But she had a lot of help from me.

    The first few days are the roughest. That's when the flock tries to evict an intruding new hen or hens. They can be brutal, and in my hen's case, they drew blood.

    But over time, my rescued hen adapted, learned who she needed to run from, and now, six months later, she's advancing up the pecking order.

    I wrote an article on how I went about it. Look down below my post and click on the third link.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by