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integration question ~ one crazy bird and two flocks who *want* to mix

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by haemony, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 21, 2011
    WV
    I have two small flocks that I was previously unable to integrate. 3 Barred Rocks and 6 other mixed birds who are only two weeks younger. When they were younger and I tried putting them together, the BRs would go after and try to murder the 2 Ameracaunas. So I put the 6 in the big coop/run down the hill and built a smaller coop in my garden near the house for the BRs. The BRs used to be 4 but their roo is gone now. [​IMG] We decided it was not a bad idea to have two flocks.

    Now the BRs have decided they really want to play nice andjoin the flock down the hill. Whenever the 6 are out free roaming, the BR trio take off down the hill and try to hang out with them. They are nice with everyone. However, the tables have turned. The smallest Ameracauna (who is completely nuts) has decided she's a tough guy now and that she hates them. The rest of the birds would be happy to mingle with the BRs but the Crazy Bird not only jumps on the BRs and chases them back up the hill, she also threatens and beats anyone in her own flock who tries to talk to them. It's so human...so teenage girlish. She's like the mean popular girl in high school who decided who can be friends with who. The other day she actually chased her flock mates into her puppy cage jail and would not let them out.

    They all keep trying to mingle, the 5 and the 3 but that little nutter just flips out and chases everyone away from each other. The BRs are determined to join this flock and Crazy Bird is determined to drive them away. She chases the BRs off and/or chases her own flock back into their run and then stands guard in the middle and growls. She actually growls. I've tried treats for everyone on neutral ground and chicken jail for the little kook. I thought she would mellow out but this has been going on for awhile. For months the two groups have always been able to see and talk to each other from their own areas which are divided by deer fencing. For months she would freak out and talk trash to them if they came near the fence. Now the gate is open because it no longer works to keep the BRsi in so she has spent all day evey day for a week keeping them out!

    I'm not sure why everyone is so intimidated by her. She's so small. Is it because she has a beard? Hah. Kidding. Can't they all just gang up on her and tell her to puff off. It's 8 against 1. Very odd.

    Any thoughts?

    Also, the 6 were recently ill but are all better now. I scrubbed and cleaned every thing and everyone before I let them all mix it up.
     
  2. chi-rn

    chi-rn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 11, 2011
    This is what I'd do. Take a large dog crate & remove the floor tray.... or build a portable tractor run out of PVC pipe & heavy duty plastic fencing (fairly inexpensive to do... have one on my BYC page my husband built as a rehab pen). Put the crazy Ameracauna inside the pen where she can still enjoy the benefits of "free-ranging", meaning she can access the grass & be near all the other chickens, but she can't actually mingle with them. She gets to watch their freedom. Do this for as long as it takes for her to mend her ways or until the others are together long enough to establish their own pecking order... meaning she won't be on top of the list. The crate or PVC pen will be lightweight enough for you to occasionally move it along with the migration of the flock. Don't know if you want this trouble, but it would be worth it to me to try something like this....

    [​IMG]
     
  3. haemony

    haemony Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 21, 2011
    WV
    Oh yes. Thanks. It is worth the trouble to try this. I already have a large dog cage so in it she goes. Guess I am attached to this bird even though she is crazy and would like to see what the other chickens do if they are allowed to mingle. She will scream though. She's a screamer.

    If the drawing in your post was had a beard it would look just like her.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2011

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