Integrating my 13 week old pullets with about 6 week old pullets

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Mainecoop, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. Mainecoop

    Mainecoop Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2014
    Hello! I was wondering at what point to integrate my 2 six week old pullets with the rest of my flock. I am going to pick them up tomorrow, and didn't know how long I would have to keep them separated for if at all where none of them are full grown. Any wisdom would be appreciated as this is the first time I have had to do this. Thanks a bunch!
     
  2. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    I would keep your younger birds separate from your flock until they are at least 12-14 weeks old. By that point, they will be nearing adult size and will be able to defend themselves better.
     
  3. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    CENTRAL MAINE
    Do you free range your existing flock? It's recommended to quarantine new poultry for a month. That means separate living quarters and run, by as much space as you can keep between the new and old birds. Be sure to wash hands well before moving between both flocks. Quarantine best practice also recommends change of clothing and shoes between flocks. This may be difficult for the small BYF keeper, and understandably so, but the risk is there of the new birds bringing in a latent disease or parasites, that may not show up immediately. Worse case, the new birds are carriers, and will not exhibit signs of disease, but can still infect your existing flock with deadly results. So, that being said, If I were integrating after quarantine, I'd bring one of my old birds from the middle of the pecking order, and introduce that bird to the new birds for a week, then if all went well, then add the 3 birds to the old flock. This gives you a chance to see if the old bird picks up any disease from the new birds, and gives them a flock mate to help with the final integration. It also may be prudent to give the new birds a topical (external) parasite treatment as soon as you get them. Free range opportunities allow an almost seamless integration of new birds.
     
  4. Mainecoop

    Mainecoop Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 19, 2014
    My hens only get to free range at night when we get out of work for a couple of hours or so. I have the two new birds inside right now until we finish construction on the makeshift pen they will stay in. What should I be treating them for upfront?? I love all my chickens and would hate to see any get sick. I thought about giving them a week or two inside then moving them out even though the new pen will be complete. Is this a good idea??
     

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