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How do you safely introduce a new hen ?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by crazychicken, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. crazychicken

    crazychicken Songster

    Sep 11, 2008
    NC
    She has been next to the pen for two days and they have been able to see each other, what should I do next ? I am just a little nervous, because the last hen I tried to move in with them was found dead.
     

  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    What size coop do you have?

    I'd put her in the coop with me in the coop and watch... if it gets to violent, I'd be picking on those who are violent.
     
  3. crazychicken

    crazychicken Songster

    Sep 11, 2008
    NC
    well it is a modified 10X15 dog pen, I have three hens and a roo, one of my worries is that she is a bantam. [​IMG]
     
  4. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    South Puget Sound
    You'll definitely need to monitor their interactions closely. Make sure she has a place to escape to, such as a cage with an opening only she can fit into.
     
  5. crazychicken

    crazychicken Songster

    Sep 11, 2008
    NC
    I have a card board box, I could cut a small hole out of it and put it in there. so should I go ahead and do that or just wait a while ?
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2009
  6. chickens asome

    chickens asome Songster

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    Apr 5, 2009
    kenora ontairo canada
    put the hen in the pen in the mornig and watch her for about 30 to 45 minutes and then break up any fighting and check bach on them about every 2 an a half hours and when it gets dark and they go to sleep it should all be fine
     
  7. what eggs

    what eggs Chirping

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    Mar 9, 2009
    That is an awful thing to find your last one like that!

    For my introductions I had a day pen set up by the coop with the younger hens in it for a few days.
    I then used the lowest hen in my older group pecking order, to meet with the young hens a few hours each day for another couple days. After she bopped a few on the head she established being boss of the younger hens.
    A few days later I let all the chickens out together to free range and it went smoothly. The older lowest hen would set the younglings straight now and then but the other old hens left them alone. It just seemed like since the young ones were under her rule they became a non threat somehow.

    I put the young hens in the main coop a couple nights later but with their crate in case they felt a need for a safe place but within 2 nights most were on the main roost or snoozing in the nesting boxes.

    I hope yours adjust well for you.
     

  8. kycklingar!

    kycklingar! Songster

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    Feb 9, 2009
    Linköping, Sweden
    It's really hard to introduce a single hen to a flodk. Instead of introducing her to a big flock of hens, try taking one or two at a time and introducing them to HER in her enclosure. After she has several of these introductions, then try to bring her into the group. Again, as everyone before me has said, monitor, monitor, monitor! If you see any signs of a scuffle, even if it doesn't amount to anything, DON'T leave her alone with them! Do the assimilation thing gradually. [​IMG]
     
  9. wingnut1

    wingnut1 Crazy Bird Lady

    what eggs -

    Initially introducing the newbies to an established hen that is lowest in the pecking order is a great idea!

    I'm going to try that for my newbies. [​IMG]
     
  10. crazychicken

    crazychicken Songster

    Sep 11, 2008
    NC
    well I separated them this way,

    I put her in the big coop and then I worked my way up from lowest hen to highest. and I locked my rooster in the pen that she was previously in, I just don't know about him. He is a BIG RIR rooster, and she is a dainty OEGB hen. she has seemed to have adjusted greatly to the hens, they were roosting on the same roost last night. (on completely different sides of the roost but on the same one. [​IMG] ) but it is a start.
     

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