Introducing a rooster to my flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Denisejmdk, Mar 26, 2016.

  1. Denisejmdk

    Denisejmdk Out Of The Brooder

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    I was just given a rooster by a friend of mine. The rooster has been free range for a while. I put him in with my three females and there was a fight. I now have the chickens and the rooster separated. They can get close to each other up against the wire but can't get to each other. About how long do you think it will take before they're okay with each other and I can let them back in the same run?
     
  2. dekel18042

    dekel18042 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How old are both the hens and the rooster? Even though you separated them, since they were together for a bit there goes any quarantine.
    I just introduced a new rooster. After quarantine, I had him in a separate pen and run where he could see the flock for a week then let them out to free range together so they weren't in a closed in space. Some of the hens (The younger ones) accepted him quicker than the older ones. For several nights he went back into his coop and they to theirs. After maybe a week of this he followed them into theirs..
     
  3. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    They will still need to work out the pecking order. Usually it is easier to introduce a rooster than a single hen but it still takes time. The hens are protecting the vitality of the flock by trying to exclude an invader.
    It would be better if they were all allowed to free range together. There will still be fights but it will go better.
     
  4. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Agree with the aforementioned about the fact that you seem to have ignored the need to quarantine birds from different sources for a minimum of 40 days as far from each other as possible.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
  5. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    Not everyone quarantines. It is not a cardinal sin not to. I understand the importance - especially if it will be emotionally or financially devastating to you if you lose your flock. But since it's a moot point now, there is no reason to beat that dead horse. Anyway, whenever you add a new bird or birds, they generally need to resettle the pecking order. How long did you leave them together? What are the ages of the rooster and the hens? Having them together but separated by a fence can help with the introduction, but they may still squabble once they're physically in the same space until they get things sorted out. If no blood is being drawn, I would leave them together.
     
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  6. Denisejmdk

    Denisejmdk Out Of The Brooder

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    The 3 hens are a year old. I didn't quarantine the rooster because my friends flock is healthy. I have 6 5 month old chicks too. The chicks were separated the entire time so they could interact with the older chickens through the fence. Every one is now separated through a fence and can get close to each other without issues. The rooster lays up against the separation by the older hens. No one has freaked out by this.
     
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    How much of a fight was there? There's always going to be some drama when introducing a new bird. Especially if the three year old hens have never been with a rooster, they're going to make him earn his place. I'm more of a "get it over with" person. I'd put him in with them, toss some scratch in the run and watch them. No blood, no foul. Unless one specific bird gets pinned down in a corner and is ganged up on, you're good to go.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    How big of a run do you have for this meeting?
    Do you free range at all? That can sometimes be the best arena for integration, the more space the better.
     
  9. Denisejmdk

    Denisejmdk Out Of The Brooder

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    I cannot free range at all. We have dogs plus owls and hawks. Our run is 13x7, off that is a small area with a coop that is able to be cut off.[​IMG]
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Might want to put up a few roosts, some logs, stumps, old chairs, old table, lean pallet against run wall,
    some things to break up the space and give places to get up and away from aggressors.
     

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