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Introduced two new pullets to the flock.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by greenmulberry, Aug 17, 2007.

  1. greenmulberry

    greenmulberry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 17, 2007
    Iowa
    Yesterday I had planned to do a "meet and greet" between my ten week old pullets and my 18 month old hens.

    The pullets are two speckled sussex. They have been in a cordoned off area of the run since Tuesday and I really never saw any aggression from the other hens through the chicken wire divider so I thought I would give them some time to interact with me watching them.

    I took their favorite treats and spread them out in the run, brought a stool in to sit on, and a big stick just to help me shove away any aggressive hens.

    I peeled back one corner of the divider and the pullets were so happy, they marched right up to one of them hens and tried to share a treat, and of course got pecked so they went and found their own treats. The other hens were very eager to go into the part of the run that the pullets had been living in and eat their food and in general check things out. My lowest ranking chicken ("Silkie chicken" is her name although she is only half silkie, that is what we call her) did give them a little grief, running at them. I took my stick and would shoo her away from them when she hassled them. The only other problem I saw was that one of my other hens would peck at them if they were in her path when she was walking.

    I ended up peeling back both ends of the chicken wire divider, so if the one chicken that was hassling them, Silkie, chased them they could go around the divider and back out, without getting stuck in a corner. Silkie chicken was my lowest ranking chicken and I think she wants to try and move up the pecking order a bit! But nothing she was doing seemed too bad, and she even calmed down quite bit over it.

    So I finally decided to go watch from my deck as it looked like things were going OK. Everyone seemed to be getting along fine, and curiously, my most dominant hen seems to have no opinion of the new gals at all. I sat with a glass of wine and my dinner on the deck and watched all the interactions.

    Finally, night approached and the hens started going in the coop. The new pullets were hesitant but they followed them in. At one point one of the new ones seemed confused and came back out to hop on the dog kennel I had been cooping them in. She called for her sister, who came out, and then led her back into the big girls coop.

    I had been planning for this to be a simple "meeting" and I would separate them again, but if the hens were letting them coop up with them, I couldn't ask for a better reception can I?? So I let them be.

    I listed and didn't hear any bickering. A few times I did hear the "whump" noise of a hen jumping off a roost, so I suspect that everyone got situated nicely once they figured out where to go. I have plenty of roost space for that many chickens. This morning I went out and they were all pecking around in the run. I have a very secure run and don't close the coop at night. I put a good load of chicken treats down to keep everyone's' mind on their tummies. While I had my morning coffee I watched them from the deck and only saw Silky rush them once. They seem to be pretty well adjusted to the group and have room to get away from Silkie, so I think this will work out just great. I sure hope everything is still OK when I get home from work!
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2007
  2. peepkeeper

    peepkeeper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 5, 2007
    upstate New York
    Wow, seems like everything is going great! [​IMG]
     
  3. Iamaqte

    Iamaqte Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 11, 2007
    Riegelsville, Pa
    So far I haven't had any problems adding new chickens to my flock either. They basically "fall in line" with the other ones.

    I am glad your chickens seem to be doing the same thing. It makes it a lot easier if they all get along.!!
     
  4. greenmulberry

    greenmulberry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 17, 2007
    Iowa
    [​IMG]

    fingers crossed indeed.

    These new chickens are so sweet, they wanted to be with the big gals so bad!
     

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