How and when should I integrate a new Mom and her chick to the rest of the flock?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by HappyHenMama, Jun 2, 2012.

  1. My Broody Bantam finally became a Mom to one chick (Nugget is 12 days old) and I have them in a seperate coop from the rest of the flock. The rest of the flock is in a coop right next to her and Nugget and they consist of 4 production reds age 3 months, 2 Cochins also 3 months and 2 Buff Orps age 2 months and one 18 month old Bantam Rooster who was her mate and is Nuggets father. My question is when can I introduce Mom and Nugget to the rest of the flock? Obviously she used to be in a coop with the Rooster but I moved him to the other coop with the new flock after she became a mother. The adolesent birds have never been in a coop with her as she was setting her egg while they were in the brooder and then they were moved into the new coop. I'm afraid also that Nugget may be a cockrel which would eventually instigate fights with the other Roo. Should I try to rehome Nugget and then introduce Mom to the new flock or should I just try to introduce them both and if so, at what age should I do this?
     
  2. GardenGal

    GardenGal Songster

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    Your broody must be so proud of her little guy! I don't know for sure, but I bet you don't have to wait so long since all the other hens are pretty young still. If it were me, I'd keep Nugget around for a little bit. He'll learn a lot being part of the flock, and will make someone a fine rooster. Good luck! Post pictures if you have the chance!
     
  3. She is a very proud Momma!

    [​IMG]

    Here are a couple of pics of Goldie and Nugget...see that comb on Nugget. They are OEGB's, what do you think? A cockrel?

    [​IMG]

    My avatar has a pic of Nugget's Father (Sal). He's a very good rooster. Anyone that may know something about Old English Game Bantams? Nugget has green legs but both Mom and Dad have blue legs...not sure how this works...I guess there is a recessed gene? I guess I should post this question out there on the Gender or Breed thread.
     
  4. GardenGal

    GardenGal Songster

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    He looks like a boy. Such a cutie! I love how closely he's watching Mama. I'd definitely keep him a while. They're so sweet together! Your hen would probably be heartbroken if he left now. She might not feel too bad if he goes when he's a teenager :)

    I'm surprised you haven't gotten more responses. You could maybe see how Goldie and Nugget do while free ranging with the flock. My guess is Goldie will beat the tar out of your young hens if they so much as look at Nugget sideways. Good luck! Curious to know how they do.
     
  5. Thank you GardenGal! I had to laugh out loud at your response about Goldie beating the tar out of the others. Your probably right. I'll give them a try at free ranging together and see how they do. I'll let you know.
     
  6. GardenGal

    GardenGal Songster

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    I'll definitely be curious to know how it goes! I've read that roosters tend to behave like proud fathers toward their chicks, so your OEGB should be fine when they're ranging. Nugget is sure going to be gorgeous - wish our neighbors wouldn't kill me, I'd take him! :)
     
  7. pgpoultry

    pgpoultry Songster

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    I always just allow the hen and chicks to come out into the flock when she feels like it, but this is within the free range setting with lots of space for escape if there were aggression. I have never had a problem.
     
  8. kingsfarm

    kingsfarm Songster

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    Ditto, my mama hen hatched 8 chicks, stayed in hen house 2 days then brought them all down ramp and out in yard to eat, she will "eat up, attack or simply dare" another hen close by them...she is a OEGH, great mother (2nd batch) good luck and just let nature take its way....have to keep a watchful eye on chiks with her at night (4 didn't make it back UP the ramp last night) I just picked them up and put them in...8 is quite a handful I imagine, sure don't want to loose any.....
     
  9. Ha, there were times I wanted to give MY teenagers away! LOL Oh, and I think your right about Nugget's daddy. He has taken my two 2 month old Buff Orps under his wing as his babies. It's so sweet.

    Thank you to the other responses as well...I'm such a nervous Mama. I'm having the hardest time telling myself little Nugget will be okay if I let him in the yard with the other hens. [​IMG]
    I think Goldie knows what she's doing though, she is such a good Mom, so we are going to give it a try this evening when it's closer to dusk...about 7:00 tonight. Wish us luck!
     
  10. Well, you were all right! Everything went well. I was shocked to see Goldie kicking some butt! Garden Gal, your're comment about Goldie beating the tar out of anyone that looked sideways at Nugget was right on. I couldn't believe my tiny little Goldie was able to give them the business. Even my 2 month old Buff Orps are bigger than she is, but let me tell you she meant business. I let them out again this morning and tonight and all went well. Stressed me out beyond belief but I stayed out there with everyone, and Nugget hasn't been touched by not a one of them. Goldie actually chased a couple of my Red Stars down and jumped on their backs! My Goodness, she is one serious Mom. [​IMG]

    Thank you everyone for your support. I couldn't have done it without you all!
     

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