Integrating "started" pullets

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by UncleHoot, Dec 6, 2007.

  1. UncleHoot

    UncleHoot Songster

    May 22, 2007
    St. Johns, Michigan
    I bought a couple ISA Browns from a friend of mine this week. I have a 10x10 coop that my other six birds have been in for the last 3 weeks, so there is a lot of space for everyone. The new chickens are probably about a month younger than the rest.

    I brought them in at night, when the others were asleep. They were a bit stressed for the 5 mile ride, so I just set both of them on the roost, and they were good... Next morning, they were still on the roost. I assumed they had moved around a bit.

    Today (3rd day) I watched all of the chickens during my lunch today, for about 30 minutes, and noticed that my RIR and Wyandotte were chasing them away every time they got close to the feeder. Plus, my two EE's were a little aggressive too. I suppose that's pretty normal. No one was bleeding or anything, but I saw the Wyandotte get a mouthful of feathers at one point.

    I added an extra feeder, which seemed to help. Does anyone else have any other tricks, ideas, advice? I hope they will all get used to each other in time. I've only noticed occasional aggressive behavior among my original six.

    Any anecdotal stories appreciated, too. [​IMG]
  2. fresheggs4u

    fresheggs4u Songster

    Dec 6, 2007
    i introduced three new birds to a flock of 20 and had no problems or pecking.

    I placed the new birds in a cage in the center of my pen and left them there for a week. Then when i truned them out, everyone was accepted.

    I have also introduced younger birds to an old flock by separating the pen in 1/2 and feeding both old and new scratch at the divider. This forced them to associate even while separated. I did this for about four weeks. The young birds were about 8 weeks old when I turned them out with 30 week old birds

    This worked for me.
  3. UncleHoot

    UncleHoot Songster

    May 22, 2007
    St. Johns, Michigan
    Thanks, fresheggs4u. The person I got the chickens from said she had never had problems integrating, but generally her flocks are right beside each other. I hope this issue fixes itself soon, but regardless, that sounds like a good plan of attack for my next integration.
  4. Queen of the Lilliputians

    Queen of the Lilliputians Songster

    Apr 5, 2007
    I've had small issues integrating, but nothing too horrible. No one has ever drawn blood. Just a lot of chasing and an occasional peck.

    Sounds like you are on the right track with the extra feeder. That should keep the overall stress level down.

    Just give them time. And keep an eye out for anyone who seems to be losing weight/is bleeding.

  5. Sabrinainmiss

    Sabrinainmiss In the Brooder

    Apr 23, 2007
    Gothenburg, Nebraska
    Hang in there. I intergrated 12 starter pullets with my 13 others in October. At first there was alot of chasing and pecking by the older crew but after a few days they settled down and by the weeks end things were fine. They just need to go through pecking order to find their place in the flock. It will get better.[​IMG]

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