How do I re-introduce my hen?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by rcentner, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. rcentner

    rcentner Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    Le Roy, NY
    Janis...Mutt hen, unknown age (adult atleast 1.5years old) A large bantam or small standard size, healthy, dewormed a little over a month ago, some stress diarrhea

    She was in with 4 other hens and 1 roo, when it got cold here they got grumpy and started picking on her to the point where she would avoid all of them except the roo. In my stupidity, I took her out of that coop and put her in the other flock I have (mostly bantams). They are more her size and not as mean in general.
    Well, I went about it in the wrong way. I just put her in the coop at night to roost with them and saw what happened in the AM. It didn't go too badly, the roo chased her until he mounted her, chased her some more and was done. She has been in with that flock for 2 1/2 weeks now, but is hiding from them. When she comes out she roosts real high and avoids all of them if she can. But some days she doesn't come out of the coop and she can't get to the food and water without a conflict. I have been hand watering and feeding her to be sure she is getting all her nutrition to fight off the new crowd.
    We haven't been able to free range much cause of all the snow and cold. They don't want to leave the run even if I offer some free range time. I was able to free range last sunday and let her out to decide which flock she wants to be with since it's not workin out for her in the new group. Well, she wanted neither, had a confrontation with Fancy from her old flock which was just a lot of jumping and feather fluffing. She ran away from all of them and we ended up putting her back in the new flock since it was obvious that the old flock is not willing to take her back and they are bigger and meaner.
    So, I noticed her lookin thin despite my twice daily feeding and watering and Avain super pack vitamins. I took her out of the coop and put her in the garage with food and water and such. Already have 2 coops (cause I couldn't get them to get along either!) can't have another coop. I have been all sorts of late to work lately with all the water and food prep in the AM having to hand feed and such.
    so....How do I get her into a flock. Should I take another flock member to put with her so that she can have a friend when I re-introduce them? I would like to try the cage in the run idea, but I really can't do that in this weather and the crate I would like to use is too big to get in the coop door for nighttime. please help, I am very fortunate that this is my DH's favorite chicken or he would be having a cow that she is free ranging in the garage! Thank you in advance for all your ideas!
  2. dickies chics

    dickies chics Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 7, 2009
    Baldwinville MA
    I don't know if my advise will be correct as i'm new at this but maybe if you take out a few chickens for a few days when you put them back in maybe she won't be at the bottom of the pecking order and she will do better.
  3. henney penny

    henney penny Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 21, 2009
    Northern Maine
    Try putting her at night when everyone is roosting,then check on her early in the morning,sometimes that will work.I had this same problem with one of mine this past fall,had to take her out they were picking on her because she went into full molt.She free ranged when I was at home to watch her,and was in a pen outside the big pen at night.She was out a month but still could see the others and they her.Tried a couple times to put her back and they chased her,I was getting tired of that so I stood there with my water spray bottle on stream and everytime they came near her they got sprayed and believe me they did not like that.I only had to do that two days off and on and it worked for me.I know you can`t do that now because of the cold but thought I would pass it on,it also worked for my egg eating hen that I had,everytime she would go near an egg in the nest she would get sprayed it took a few days but it worked,now if I pick up the spray bootle the ones I used it on runs.
  4. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    I think it will work with the second flock if you can get her to hang in there! Can you rig up some kind of raised feed and water station (like on top of nestbox?) so she can get to food and water in the coop. I would continue to hand feed her also, though that is a drag. It takes at least a couple of weeks for them to see her as part of the flock. Do they have plenty of room in the coop and run? good luck and keep us posted on her progress.
  5. rcentner

    rcentner Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    Le Roy, NY
    Quote:Well, I have her in the garage and she seems perfectly happy. I had tried putting food n water in the coop and 2 places in the run, hoping that she could sneak some in when they weren't looking. It worked ok, but she could only get a nibble or 2 at one time. I think she has lost a bit of weight and I am concerned about her, I worry that she lost muscle mass as well as access fat since she hasn't been able to move about like a normal chicken. Normal stools today [​IMG] I gave her lots of food and some corn to scratch about and eat. I may have to start the whole thing over again when she gains back some weight and has the energy to deal with them. The runs are adequate, but not "plenty of space". I wish I could've afforded more fence when we built them, but my DH wants to make them bigger when we get some money for fencing. I free range them when I can monitor them, but they wont go out in the snow. I talked with my DH last night about what to do with her and we have several ideas, but nothing solid. Right now I have to get her back to her old self and hope that she's not lonely. But then again, she has been lonely for 2 1/2 wks while hiding from the flock. I do believe she is still molting too. So, my DH suggested to keep her in the garage (unless real cold at night, then bring her in the house at night) until spring and either try to introduce her when they can free range more or try the cage technique (I read on the board about new intro's). OR ..he wants to get turkeys and thinks we could keep her with the turkeys. IDK, I want her in the flock cause she went broody last year and we were lookin forward to some chicks, but after all this I don't even want to think about introducing chicks to the flocks! Any thoughts on the turkeys? Or what to keep her company with, like a toy or something?
  6. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    Hmmmm...I could be wrong about this but I think she needs a friend. I wonder if things would go better if you put a friend in with her (and watched veryyyyyyyyyyyyyyy closely till you were sure they were buddies). That way when reintro happens they at least have each other.
  7. rcentner

    rcentner Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 6, 2009
    Le Roy, NY
    well, we have a plan. She is fattening up in the garage, seemingly very happy. My DH was talking yesterday about building a new coop (a nice, dreamy one) and I know from past experience that moving the chooks stirs them up enough they don't seem to notice newcomers. So we will re-introduce her when my dream coop is built (spring). Collecting materials now. Fortunatly for me my DH is very motivated and will get the coop done in no time once we have all the stuff, even made plans already. He is gonna start collecting leftover lumber from his jobsite. We have been hanging out in the garage with her to keep her company and enjoying watching her stuff her face! I couldn't believe when DH said yesterday "I want to build you a better coop, let me show you" and got out the paper to make plans! I said..."wow, that is my dream coop". I will keep the plans and post it all when we are done!

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