How does this integration process work?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by harleyjo, May 31, 2010.

  1. harleyjo

    harleyjo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 6, 2010
    SW Iowa
    On Sat. I put three, 3 week old chicks in with some that are about 7 weeks. They are doing ok, not getting picked on too much but the 3 little ones stay together and the older ones do their thing. Is there any instinct at all yet with these older girls to watch over the younger ones yet? I let them free range but also have a small run outside their coop. It took until last evening before the 3 little ones even came back out of the coop into the small yard. Now tonight they did come out of the little yard but stayed pretty close to it. Will the older girls watch out for them at all yet?

    Also are chickens pretty social with each other and do a lot together in groups? When they go out free ranging I see several little groups doing stuff together. My husband thinks when they get older they are more loner type animals. From what I see now I don't think so.
     
  2. abanjaf

    abanjaf Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2009
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    I have integrated three sets of different aged chicks this Spring. They definitely form "cliques" (sp?) with their hatchmates/broodmates. My three oldest chicks, now 3 months, I call the 3 musketeers because they are always together even though integrated into the adult coop. The older girls will probably not watch out for your younger set yet. It takes a while for the social bonds to form. Chickens are most definitely social creatures! Not loners at all (although there are always a few individuals out there, especially those raised by themselves). Chickens constantly interact with each other and are quite entertaining to watch! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE mine! I have a few that think that I am the world's most perfect perch:)
     
  3. felidaet

    felidaet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 10, 2008
    Vancouver, Wa.
    My one year old hens rarely wonder off by themselves when free ranging. They often break up into groups of 2 - 4. The entire flock sometimes sticks together.
     
  4. write2caroline

    write2caroline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 21, 2009
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    It kind of reminds me of high school and social clicks. They peck at each other and as they get older they establish and restablish the order. Add the younger ones at night and introduce treats the next day. Lots of them. They may or may not hang around each other and may peck at each other - have good places for them to get away from each other if the pecking is too much.

    Caroline
     

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