How to introduce new chicks to flock of one?

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Mamma's Place, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. Mamma's Place

    Mamma's Place New Egg

    Dec 30, 2011
    I am again asking for advice about adding chickens to our flock. We are down to just one Buff Orpington. We were thinking of getting about 5 day old chicks around the first or second week of October. We live in Southern CA and our weather is generally mild for a long time. We have a totally enclosed run and coop that can fit about 6 chickens. I have read about the dog crate in the run to separate them for several weeks once the chicks are big enough, but my questions is - can we put our one hen in there instead of the new chicks for those several weeks? I read once that one person switched out who was in the dog crate every other day. But I am not sure I could do all that. Any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
  2. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

    May 14, 2014
    Welcome to BYC. Glad you decided to join our flock. Yes, you can put your one hen in the dog crate instead of the chicks. It won't matter which birds are in which enclosure as long as they can see but not touch each other. Just make sure before you turn the hen in with the chicks that the chicks have grown large enough to protect themselves from your hen. Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. Cheers.
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Buff orps are usually docile birds, and the hens go broody fairly often. If she was at a broody stage I think she would except the chicks very willingly. Were the others taken by predators? You may need to beef up security in coop and run. Welcome to Backyard chickens, very glad you joined the flock.
  4. Majd

    Majd Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 22, 2012
    Welcome to backyard chickens! As stated above BO are docile and keen to being moms, and she's been lonely for a while and would appreciate some company, i would try putting them in the same coop and see hiw she reacts, if she's doesn't bother them or be aggressive i would leave them be. But 5 day old chicks need warmth even in south California's October, and even if she did not bother them she will probably not keep them warm if she is not in brooding mode.... So i would keep them in the crate and use it as a brooder for a couple of weeks first and then let them out with her... And no I wouldn't keep her, a fully grown bird that is used to bigger space, in a dog crate while the 5 day old babies need it as a brooder... IMO.
  5. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

    x2 on Michael O'Shay's advice.

    Good luck with the new little ones!
  6. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
  7. trailrider330

    trailrider330 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2013
    Midwest America

    You may want to check out this article if you have not already done so:

    Regardless of how you decide to handle the situation, it sounds like those babies still need a brooder and a heat source until they are feathered out. Whatever way you can best make that happen is probably the route you should go.

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