Here me out. I have 5 grown hens, and four 5-7 week old chicks that are currently outside. I have PLENTY of space, the run is 18/24 feet. When I took the chickies outside I thought that before I put them in their cage in the run I should just plop them down with the other birds and observe carefully to see what happens. It went really well, there was of course quite a bit of pecking in the beginning but the hens only ever pecked the chicks if they were in their way or trying to eat some of their food, and there was no blood, just some pulled feathers when the rooster chick challenged the top hen (it didn't go well). Other than that, they leave each other alone. I put out 2 new feeders and waterers so everyone gets fed, plus lots of treats to occupy the big ones. I ended up leaving them like that all day long yesterday, but I was going out every 20 minutes to check on them. When it was time to go to bed the hens went into the coop and the chicks followed them and they let them stay there! Granted they slept on the floor and there was a lot of squawking from the big hens (but no biting), but still. I shut them in together but woke up half an hour before sunrise and opened the coop so it would not be light out and the chicks would be trapped. It went well they all made it through the night. I am still watching them VERY carefully. And I know we all hear the horror stories of hens scalping chicks or eating them like hyenas, but this seems to be going very well. Is it likely at some point the hens will just "snap" and kill them? And is this normal or is my flock special? I have an uncle who integrates chickens the same way (but with adult hens), and it's the same thing. They get a good peck if they come too close but otherwise they're left alone. Let me know what you think and please your experiences. Please be kind.