introducing a new hen

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by vtara16, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. vtara16

    vtara16 Out Of The Brooder

    97
    0
    39
    Sep 1, 2009
    North Hampton
    I recently bought two new hens, one ended up being sick (I am keeping her separate).

    I would like to introduce the new not sick RIR hen to the two hens that I have had for about 4 months. I have kept her separate for approx. 4 weeks. I have kept her close to the coop & run in which the older hens are living in.


    When I put the new RIR in the coop/run for a few hours, my other 2 hens just chase her around and peck at her. I felt so terrible & could tell that she was very scared.

    I am wondering what types of way other people introduce new hens into their flocks. Any ideas would be very helpful, as she is still separate from the rest and it is starting to get too cold for her.

    Thanks
     
  2. gkeesling

    gkeesling Chillin' With My Peeps

    398
    0
    129
    Nov 24, 2008
    Hagerstown, IN
    I've heard on here of people who wait until night time when the current chickens are on the roost. Then take the new one and put it on the roost. When they get up in the morning they don't realize so much a new one joined them over night. I've not tried this though. I've never had just one chicken to introduce to the flock. I've had two or more I just throw them all together. I be sure the new ones have a place to hide behind if they want to. They peck pretty bad during the first day but after a few days it all settles down and they all seem to get along.
     
  3. kelidei

    kelidei ~*Dances with chickens*~

    530
    2
    141
    Mar 18, 2009
    Northern Illinois
    Quote:I am really glad to hear that because that is kind of what I just did an hour ago. I took my 9month old Australorp and Buff Orpington pullets and put them with the 16 week olds. There is more room in the second coop. So far we're OK--- my australorp Elvira aside from being a little skittish seems to not care one bit--- my Orpington Mz Buffy on the other hand was jumped by my junior Orpington roo--- she was not too happy--- so right now she is hanging out in a nest box--- I assume waiting for things to calm down. I am going to check in on them in a little while--- your words were just the encouragement I needed. [​IMG]
     
  4. cackilacky

    cackilacky Chillin' With My Peeps

    105
    1
    111
    Aug 20, 2009
    North Carolina
    I recently put 2 young pullets (about 3 1/2 months old at the time) in with my older birds because it was getting cold at night and the little pen didn't offer much protection. Same situation: the older chickens had seen the younger ones but not been together. I let them range together for a few days before moving the younger ones. I was a little concerned b/c the older ones did seem to pick on the little ones, but since they were outside they could escape. The first few days in the big coop, the new birds didn't want to leave the hen house, but since then everything has been fine. Just give it a few days and keep on eye on things to make sure the big chickens aren't getting too bossy and actually hurting her. They will definitely give her a bit hard time for a little while to establish the pecking order.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by