Hens not nice 6 week chicks

Chickieh

In the Brooder
Mar 7, 2018
12
8
16
My 8 egg layer hens aren't very accepting to the 6 week old chicks when I get them close to the hen coop. How can I get them ready to go out in the coop full time without all of them being too aggressive on the chicks?

Thank you.
 

ChocolateMouse

Free Ranging
7 Years
Jul 29, 2013
5,603
17,949
707
Cleveland OH
6 weeks is far too young to be integrating with adult hens. Chicks need a brooder with a heat source for 8 weeks unless you are in a tropical climate. You won't be able to integrate them with adult hens without the adult hens being likely to kill them until they are at least 12 weeks, and better yet 16.
After they are nearly the same size as the adult hens you can integrate them by placing them in a temporary wire pen near the chicken coop where they can be seen but not touched for a few days. Then slip them into the coop at night after they have all gone to roost and place them on the roost bar. There will be some fighting still but it will be minimal.
 

Chickieh

In the Brooder
Mar 7, 2018
12
8
16
6 weeks is far too young to be integrating with adult hens. Chicks need a brooder with a heat source for 8 weeks unless you are in a tropical climate. You won't be able to integrate them with adult hens without the adult hens being likely to kill them until they are at least 12 weeks, and better yet 16.
After they are nearly the same size as the adult hens you can integrate them by placing them in a temporary wire pen near the chicken coop where they can be seen but not touched for a few days. Then slip them into the coop at night after they have all gone to roost and place them on the roost bar. There will be some fighting still but it will be minimal.

I know they aren't ready to go out in the coop with the hens at 6 weeks. I was asking for best ways to get them ready, and the hens ready. Tips on how to have a peaceful integration. Thanks for those you gave tho.
 

Alaskan

The Frosted Flake
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
Jul 26, 2008
33,825
68,191
1,412
Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
My Coop
My Coop
I usually wait until the chicks are at least half the size of the adilts.

Then I do a big change of the main coop with regard to moving around as much as possible. The idea is to make the coop residents feel a bit confused, that way they aren't as interested in picking on the new arrivals.

I also make sure I have a minimum of 2 of everything like feed, water, and perches... less fighting.
 

blackdog043

Crowing
Feb 19, 2017
2,401
4,136
416
SE PA
6 weeks is far too young to be integrating with adult hens. Chicks need a brooder with a heat source for 8 weeks unless you are in a tropical climate. You won't be able to integrate them with adult hens without the adult hens being likely to kill them until they are at least 12 weeks, and better yet 16.

Mine are 4 and 4 1/2 weeks old, I raised them in the coop brooder with my 10 one year olds. I used the mama heat pad in the brooder. The brooder is now open 24/7 with a cardboard panic door. They are mostly out of their brooder during the day. Last night they started roosting on top of their brooder.(no heat, mid 30's overnight) They get a peck here and there, but nothing aggressive.
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blackdog043

Crowing
Feb 19, 2017
2,401
4,136
416
SE PA
I know they aren't ready to go out in the coop with the hens at 6 weeks. I was asking for best ways to get them ready, and the hens ready. Tips on how to have a peaceful integration. Thanks for those you gave tho.

Is your coop big enough to have a separate wire pen, for your six week old chicks, with food and water? This way they can be separate but get used to each other a little bit. You will still have them getting a peck here and there when you do integrate. If you free range, that's a good time to integrate.
 

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