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How do we add new chickens to our backyard coop?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Macitypeeps, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. Macitypeeps

    Macitypeeps New Egg

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    Dec 20, 2008
    Madison, WI
    I am very new to the ways of the chicken and have a question about adding 2-3 more to our flock in the late spring. Here in WI it does not get warm till late May early June and want to add chicks at that time. My question is how? We have 4 pullets. Plus we have 3 bantams that are not ours but that are rooming in for the winter and will return to thier home in the spring. The 3 banties were added spur of the moment...basically our neighboor put them in the coop at night while my 4 were sleeping. It was kind of an emergency becasue the temps were dipping to -40 and we had room and 2 heat lamps. I gave her permission to add them..... she thought it would be better to do it at night when they were sleeping rather then during the day when they were awake! Well the roomies have been with us for 5 weeks. They seem to all get along well even after the first initial shock of waking up in the morning with 3 additions on their roost!

    My concern is after we give back the 3 roomies. We want to get 3 to replace the ones that leave. How long should we wait to introduce the 2-3 new pullets to our flock? Will our girls be upset that their new found buddies are gone? Will they accept the new ones as easily as they did the others? My chickens are 3 wyandotes, and 1 polish. The roomies are bantams consiting of a polish, and 2 EE's. It took a week or so for all the gilrs to adjust but no one was injured. Just a lot of yelling...bawk...bawk.....bawk!!! These days they all roost together but hang with their own flock in the day within very close proxicimty to one another. I think they secretly like each other.

    Any advice would be appreciated!!!
     
  2. ibpboo

    ibpboo Where Chickens Ride Horses

    Jul 9, 2007
    always changing
    First you are suppose to keep them separate for about 30 days for health observations. But, since your girls accepted newcomers once already, sounds as if they are not too aggressive. Try it at night again, and then keep an eye in morning to see if any one is way too aggressive, to the harmful stage. Pecking and squawking will happen, but if it starts getting serious. If you can let them free range together first, sometimes that helps, and hopefully your pen is large enough, that they can get away from each other's space.
    Good luck!
     
  3. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    Jun 15, 2008
    When introducing sometimes you can get away with just turning them loose in the coop like that. Some say adding them at night helps but chickens have very good memories of their flock mates and will still realize those chickens don't belong. They will still have to go through the whole pecking order so I don't think it helps that much. The only benefit I see is the chickens might be less active and less likely to start a fight in the very early morning hours or late in the evening than if they came across newcomers during broad daylight. If you aren't sure they'll get along it's best to put the new ones in cages or a seperate pen where they can interact through the bars/mesh without hurting each other. That way they'll get used to each other a little and when you do turn them loose there will be less arguments and no shock at seeing newcomers in their coop and pen.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2009
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Quote:YES!
     
  5. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    First off, as said already, you need to keep them away from the flock for health reasons. If you are getting chicks, PM me and I will go through our very successful intergration procedure with you. If you are getting full grown hens, they will need to go through the pecking order nonsense.

    We started with 6 layers and have successfully integrated two batches of chicks from the information I learned here.... PM me and I will go through it with you if you like.
     

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