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having some problems intergrating mama hen back in with her coop mates.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by bucky52, Jul 29, 2014.

  1. bucky52

    bucky52 Songster 7 Years

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    her young one is now 7 weeks old.i have a large area for my girls.9 runs all connected,but can be closed off if needed.mama hen has been visible since she hatched out her one chick.I have been letting them all free range in the evenings together.i have two hens that are right down mean to her.So I have put them in a separate run.but they are still visible to he rest of their flock.I am feeling guilty as I can tell that I have stressed them out,they have not laid in several days.any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    thanks
    bucky from Va.
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road Premium Member 8 Years

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    You're pretty much just going to have to let them work it out if you want them together. She's been separated from the flock for over 2 months now, so she's going to have to reestablish her place in the flock, and her baby will also have to find its place, too. Being visible probably helps reduce some of the stress of integration, but they still need to work out the pecking order once they're all together.
     
  3. pipemum

    pipemum Songster

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    I only had five hens. One raised some chicks--they were always visible to the other chickens, and even were let out in the same run every day. However, when the mama hen wanted to integrate with the other 4 once she was done raising the chicks (I think it was around 7 weeks), they were terrible to her. I did everything I could to help get her back into the flock, and NOTHING helped the situation. Finally, after 2 months of her being pecked on till bloody, I gave the bullied mama hen away. She was super sweet, but the other 4 are great layers. The one suggestion I did not take up was the suggestion to add more chickens to the flock...the timing was never right, but that may have helped disperse some of the bullying.
     
  4. bucky52

    bucky52 Songster 7 Years

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    thank you.Its been two days since I separated them.Yesterday evening I let them all out to free range,and the bullies,were not seeking her out to attack her.so I am going to let the bullies stay in their own area for at least another week.and than I will try again.
     
  5. bucky52

    bucky52 Songster 7 Years

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    It is so stressful dealing with them when they all can't get along.Every year I like to add at least two or three pullets to my flock.i think I'm done letting my hens brood eggs.
     
  6. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road Premium Member 8 Years

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    Something to think about for the future - if you do let your hen hatch out a clutch, put her and the chicks in with the flock right away. Some put them together within a day or so, I wait about a week because my chickens free range and I have a mama barn cat that's always on the prowl. They integrate much better than because the hen is so protective of her babies that no on will be able to get near them, and the others just learn to accept their presence in the flock. This year I was glad I put my first batch in with the flock when I did, because a week or so later, a raccoon got into my coop and killed the mama hen, leaving her 5 babies orphaned. They were already integrated in with the flock at that point, and none of the other birds bothered them at all. The babies were about 7 weeks old at the time, so still considerably smaller than the adult birds.
     
  7. bucky52

    bucky52 Songster 7 Years

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    I have read here,that you should wait unit the young ones are close to fully grown before you should put them in with the rest of the flock.This hen is terrified of the bully's.and she will leave her young and run.But thanks I will keep that in mind.I was afraid that the other hens would kill the little ones.that is why I have always separated them.
     
  8. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Crossing the Road Premium Member 8 Years

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    When you're introducing chicks without a mother hen to protect them, it is a good idea to wait until they're almost fully grown. If you put them in too young, the adults in the flock may possibly kill them. They're not a real nurturing animal unless they have been broody. I used to wait until my chicks were a good two months old or so, too, for the same reason you waited. I had no idea how fiercely a broody hen would protect her chicks or that the rooster would actually come between the broody family and a bossy hen. I have seen that a few times since I've started integrating them younger. I read a few posts on how it was so much easier for the broody and the chicks, so last year I finally took the chance and tried it. I won't go back to waiting so long any more. At 7 weeks old, she's pretty much weaned her young one by now. That's part of why she runs. If her chick was still within a couple of weeks of hatching, I think she'd be a whole different bird.
     
  9. bucky52

    bucky52 Songster 7 Years

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    Thank you.If I decide to let one brood next year.I will try that.
     

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