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How to safely add one EE pullet to 6 month old pullets?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chickens really, Sep 22, 2015.

  1. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    I bought three EEs a couple of weeks ago. They were all quarantined in my garage. They were roughly 10 weeks old.
    Still peeping and not roosting. To my dismay, two turned out to be cockerels so I returned them. Now I have one very lonely pullet in my garage and here in central Alberta it gets cold at night. -2 this morning.
    I have read 30 days to quarantine new birds, but think its time to move her into the coop with the big girls?
    Should I set up a dog crate to keep her safe? How long should I keep her in it? I also have a standard Polish Rooster and wonder if he will accept this new pullet? I have 9 hen/pullets of mixed duel purpose breeds. one ISA brown, two Barred rocks, two Columbian rocks, two Red rock cross, two Leghorns.
    My point is, should I move her into the coop? my thoughts are if I run a heat lamp in the garage for her she wont be used to the temp out in my coop once I do move her.
    Any thoughts and advise on what I should do, will be greatly appreciated !!
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2015
  2. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

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    Hi,

    If i recall correctly, the general feeling is around 4 weeks isolation is a good rule of thumb (personally i reduce this time span to around 2 weeks).

    Yep, a dog crate is fine to create the "see and no peck" system. The duration of keeping her in the crate depends on a number of things.

    1.Do you free range? If not, please describe how you keep your chickens during the day?
    2. How many feeding / watering stations do you have?
    3. Are the rest of your flock adults?

    The reason i ask is that free ranging provides sufficient space for your newbie to hide away from the other chickens, if necessary. Having multiple feeding / watering stations reduces competition and allows your newbie to get food and water more readily. Some people create "bolt hoes" for smaller new flock members - a place where the entry / exit is too small for the adult birds to enter, but will allow the youngster in.

    If you spend time with your chickens and observe their behaviour towards the newbie, then it may give you an indication of what the general mood towards her is. When you get a good vibe from your flock members, you may wish to consider letting her out of the crate on a night time and see if she attempts to roost with the others (tends to be a less stressful time to introduce new chickens).

    Introducing 1 new chicken seems to create more stress on the new individual as they are the focus of attention / aggression. Having at least 2 new chickens to introduce reduces the focus on one individual and they also have a "friend" during what is a stressful time. With the benefit of hindsight, it may have been an idea to have kept the males for the purposes of easing the introduction to the flock for the pullet you have.

    The rooster will be fine with the newbie.

    I free range my chickens and any newbies are in a mini-coop which i bring outside every day and put next the feeding station so the flock sees them all the time and vice versa. After 2-3 days (assuming they are adults and i get a good enough vibe) I open the door to the mini-coop on a night time and so the new bird can choose to stay put, or roost with the flock.

    Its not going to be easy to introduce such a young pullet into the mix as she is not big enough to defend herself. You may consider getting some additional pullets of the same age and introducing them en-masse.

    I'd advise reading more threads here on BYC as other members are bound to have more experience and suggestions.

    Sorry for my rather rambling reply - i can touch-type which is not always helpful [​IMG]

    I wish you the best of luck!

    CT
     
  3. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    My older members are 6 months old, my rooster is 5 months old. The new EE is roughly 11 weeks old.
    She is smaller than my older birds.
    The guy was supposed to replace the cockerels with pullets but had an attitude once I brought them back. He never gave me that option.
    To try and find a young pullet this time of year is hard in my neck of the woods.
    I have a large coop its 8x12. The run is 8x12 with an extension on it so they can have more area to pick and scratch. I was free ranging but have a fox around that took one of my hens about a month ago.
    I also have two different feeding stations.
    your advise was helpful!

    Thanks!
     
  4. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

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    What may be an idea is to section off some of your run for the young one and use the crate in the coop. I don't fancy her chances with the flock for some time to come.

    Sorry about the guy who sold you the chickens - hardly fair eh?

    Good luck!

    CT
     
  5. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

    23,045
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    Africa - near the equator
  6. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    That will work. I have all kinds of pens I can set up for her.
    Thanks!
    Yes, the guy turned out to be a real jerk.
    I found another add for EEs that are the same age as this young EE.
    wouldn't I have to go through the whole process of quarantine though?
    I am running out of time with Winter almost here.

    Thanks!
     
  7. CTKen

    CTKen Monkey business Premium Member

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    You're welcome! I guess you would still have to go through the quarantine process, but you may consider putting the new EEs with your existing EE due the onset of winter. If they get along, then they have company and warmth together. Thats what i would do at least.

    All the best
    CT
     
  8. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    Sounds good!

    Thanks!
     
  9. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    CENTRAL MAINE
    Do you allow your birds to free range at all? I'd get the new ones acclimated as you're planning to do. If you put them in a crate in your run, the idea of quarantine becomes a moot point, b/c to properly quarantine, you need separation of at least several hundred feet, and change of foot wear, and probably clothing before moving from one flock to an other. Most home quarantines are in name only. Any how, moving on: If you allow your flock out to free range at all, as soon as the new birds are settled, and view the crate as an acceptable sleeping place... (I do hope your run is predator proof. Any thing less than 1/2: hardware cloth will leave them at risk to night time predators) you can then let the new ones out for a bit of daily free range. Then, in a few days, allow the older flock members to join them. After a few days of this, you can then move the newbies into the main coop. I wish you the best. It's often not as bad as we fear that it will be as long as the new birds have extra feeding stations and places to hide out of line of sight of the aggressors.
     
  10. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    A single bird is the hardest integration. I think it might be better to separate a middle of the flock bird from your flock, and put her with the new one. They will squabble, but should settle down. Leave them together for another week. People who do chickens seriously call this a canary bird, as this bird can test the resistance of the flock to anything the new bird might be carrying. But in this case, I am suggesting that it is easier to introduce a pair of birds to an established flock.

    Mrs K
     

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