I added 5 hens, 6 months old

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by snoozee-q, Mar 2, 2015.

  1. snoozee-q

    snoozee-q In the Brooder

    Jan 12, 2014
    Spout Spring, VA
    I added my new hens at night but two days later and they are still afraid to come down to eat or drink. The three older hens and bantam rooster are down and doesnt appear they are being mean. How long will it take for the new ones to become comfortable? I put food and water up where the new ones are so at least the get food and water.
  2. LoveThemBirds

    LoveThemBirds Songster

    Feb 23, 2015
    Petting Buffy Like a Dog
    Likely another week...
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    It can take days...... or weeks, but they will likely remain a bit of a subflock for quite sometime.
    As long as they are eating, drinking, pooping and roosting ok, they'll be fine.

    How much space do you have for 8 birds?
    Lots of space and places to 'hide' or get up and away can help, good that you have multiple feed/water stations as that helps alot.
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    If your run is a wide open space, like many I see here, it is very intimidating to a low pecking order bird, and the young, new ones are low. It will seem more cluttered, but adding perches can increase the area your birds are in. Hideouts allow birds to get out of sight of each other, and they often need that. Make sure you do not create a trap, there needs to be two exits.

    Lean a pallet up against the wall, put a pallet up on blocks so that it is 2 feet off the ground, place a rod kitty corner for an outside roost. If you can place a board so that it blocks the view of the feeder from the main area, that often helps.

    These things will really help, but they will remain a sub flock until nearly winter. Or at least mine always have. Unless you raise chicks in a flock, it does take a long time for them to become one flock.

    Mrs K
  5. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    I hang my feeders and waters from the ceiling for the purpose of allowing a bird to be able to 'duck' under them to get away, that is often all that is needed in my coop. I also have a few of those old milk crates, I place them around the coop floor for a way or place to get out of sight. Silly things… Also I have at times used a creep, what I mean by this is a place that the smaller birds can get into, but the older/bigger bird can not so easy. Creeps for farm animals are used to allow the young stock access to free choice grain, pellets and the like. But the principal in the coop is much the same. A hole cut in a piece of wood and a pallet or such making a protective wall, it need not be fancy, just something to give them a break from being harassed non stop. Also if it is one or two birds doing the chasing, a day or two in time out can make a difference as well. Place them in a dog cage/crate or such and let everyone else work things out, when the offenders go back in… it is they who need to reassert their position in the flock.

    Best to you and your birds,

  6. snoozee-q

    snoozee-q In the Brooder

    Jan 12, 2014
    Spout Spring, VA
    Thank you everyone. They are still up in the nesting area. All 5 sleep together on one sude and tge others on the opposite. I have achicken tractor that is 8x4 x 4.5. Everytime they try to come down the ladder. The other girls intimidate them. I'm think of letting them all out early Sunday evening just before the sun sets. My hopes are the newbys will gain more confidence. It will be a week Saturday that I got them. Any more thought are appreciated.
  7. snoozee-q

    snoozee-q In the Brooder

    Jan 12, 2014
    Spout Spring, VA

    I like your ideas. Thank you.

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