Introducing 8 week old chickens to the flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Sweeney22, Oct 28, 2013.

  1. Sweeney22

    Sweeney22 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 15, 2012
    Hi all-
    I have a hen who is raising her babies in an enclosed area that is in full view of the entire flock. Her babies are 8 weeks old and i was hoping to let them out with the rest of the flock soon. The flock has been able to check them out since birth. I dont know if the babes are hens or roos yet. I do have one roo that runs the flock. (flock is 16 - not including two 8 wk old babies and three 4 week old babies). I introduced my 8 week olds to my flock last spring (I raised them) and I kept them apart where they could see eachother for a couple weeks and they integrated without serious issue. It did take a while for them to act as one group but the roo helped that i think (he came with the new flock-he was supposed to be a hen!).

    So with these hen raised chicks (now 8 weeks) I am not sure how to proceed with introducing them to the flock.

    Oh- I have a large run and coop and then a very large enclosure for them. They go out in the enclosure by day and we close them in the coop/run at night.


    Thanks for the help!
    Anne
     
  2. Den in Penn

    Den in Penn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just let them get together with the flock. Mom should run interference for her chicks. Although at eight weeks she may nearly be ready to wean them. If she is at that point now you will just have to watch to see how it goes. As with all integrations more space with hides helps. After a week or two with no strife you could just put everyone together. You could have let them mingle much earlier when mom was sure to be in full mother mode and the chicks were still sticking close.
     
  3. Sweeney22

    Sweeney22 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 15, 2012
    Thank you. I should have asked sooner. I have another group of four week old chicks that perhaps I will begin integrating too. I waited mostly to make sure the babies couldn't slip out of the enclosure. I will try tomorrow and see how it goes w the 8 week olds. Thanks again!
     
  4. Cluky

    Cluky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If the hen is with the little ones I wouldn't separate them for more then a week. The mother hen takes really good care of making sure no one hurts the chicks. Now that said if they start getting on older hens' nerves from time to time you will see a lesson teaching type of squabble. But it rarely escalates into anything serious. Besides chickies have to learn their place in pecking order too :old
     

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