Heya. Any tips on introducing pullets to a lone ISA hen?

Scrambles83

Free Ranging
Dec 29, 2020
1,461
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Victoria, Australia
Heya, very glad to finally become a member of this page. I’ve read enough threads on here over the last few years so figured it was time to take the plunge haha.
We live in Geelong, Australia.

So, we got our first hens 2&1/2 years ago. They were 18 week old ISA’s which our 3 year old daughter named Henny Penny and Bok Bok. Both stoped laying a few months ago.

They used to free range constantly even though they had a run but being a suburban property our gardens and outside area were suffering badly; either dug up to oblivion or covered in poop (or both) so they then were reintroduced about 6 months ago into just the run with supervised roaming.

We lost Penny (the alpha hen) just over a month ago , which was heartbreaking, and since then Bok has seemed a bit lost, not coming out of the coop as much or as early each morning (they were never in there except for laying and sleeping.)

SO...on the weekend I brought home 2x9 weeks old Sussex pullets (hoping they don’t turn out to be cockerels, I’m already attached!)One is light named Snow White and the other is speckled named Belle. And yes, my now 5 year old daughter got the pleasure of naming them again 😂

They are seperate to Bok atm, they roam the run when Bok is out free ranging. There’s been a few scuffles when Bok comes back in when they aren’t ready but nothing too drastic, a charge and a few pecks/grab at a feather. They are very quick to find their escape routes haha. Bok is now getting up early again, pacing around their house and is more vocal than she has been in a long time. I’m guessing it’s because she’s a bit freaked out and curious as to who is entering her domain? We recently moved her coop too, hoping it might make her a little less territorial once we had the young ones 🤷🏻‍♀️

I can’t wait until they can co-exist, I’m thinking of letting them out to free range with her but not confident I can catch the little ones again! And it might be too soon?! First time doing introductions and I know ISA’s can be quite chookist.

We have an 11 year old terrier cross dog called Scrambles, hence the username, and he is very good with our feathered ladies. Penny, being alpha, would challenge him sometimes but he’s just a big goof and would bark and run around her until she gave up.

Any advice concerning my current introduction situation is welcome. I’ll pop pics of Bok (the ISA) and of the 2 bubba Sussex’s (Snow-light, Belle-speckled). Not great shots so no one can prob can’t help me to say if they are probable hens or Roos.

Thanks, and again, very happy to finally be a member :)
 

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DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
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Hello and welcome to BYC! :frow Glad you joined.
You need lots and lots of SPACE and things to hide behind and perch on in the run for a successful integration. Your coop looks like it might be too small for three birds to live in harmony that have not fully integrated yet.
Integration takes lots of time. They will remain sub-flocks until the younger ones hit POL. If you've had the younger ones in the coop for a week or so, I would allow them to range with Bok. They will come back.
If she hasn't injured them and is simply pecking them and driving them away, that is very normal. Let them be to work things out.
 

Scrambles83

Free Ranging
Dec 29, 2020
1,461
16,011
666
Victoria, Australia
Hello and welcome to BYC! :frow Glad you joined.
You need lots and lots of SPACE and things to hide behind and perch on in the run for a successful integration. Your coop looks like it might be too small for three birds to live in harmony that have not fully integrated yet.
Integration takes lots of time. They will remain sub-flocks until the younger ones hit POL. If you've had the younger ones in the coop for a week or so, I would allow them to range with Bok. They will come back.
If she hasn't injured them and is simply pecking them and driving them away, that is very normal. Let them be to work things out.
Thank you, this is very good to hear and exactly the advice I was looking for. It’s not quite been a week yet so I’ll continue with what I’m doing, and maybe try to range them together in a few days.
I’ve got some things for them to hide behind/break the line of sight in the run but maybe I’ll pop some items in there that they can perch on too.
And yes, not injuring them but wanting to be the boss and for them to know it.
Thanks again ☺
 

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