introducing babies to flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by missy1971, Feb 1, 2017.

  1. missy1971

    missy1971 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi everyone

    I have a one year old Red Star hybrid hen "Miss Ginny" who i rescued from being bullied pretty bad by the other chickens in her flock at my friend's farm. she has been alone for about a month, she is very sweet, and funny. Last week I got 4 older chick hens (2 Buff Orpington's, and 2 Barred Rocks) ,and want to get them socialized with Ginny. i went in with one of the youngins today just to see how Ginny would act and she immediately started pecking it....so im thinking that a small pen for the babies could go into the big one so they could get used to each other!?? ideas, suggestions to this girl who hasn't had chicken's since i was a child!

    Oh and Ginny has gotten really sorta of pushy, wanting out of her pen, like trying to push through me, to get out ....could this new attitude possibly have to do with the newbies???


    Thanks for helping!!!
     
  2. Laurobee13

    Laurobee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    How old are the new chicks?
     
  3. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    How old are the chicks? How big is the coop and run?
     
  4. Laurobee13

    Laurobee13 Out Of The Brooder

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    When I introduce young birds to older ones, I usually do it once the young birds are at least 3 months old. If I can wait longer I do.

    I usually have my chicks little coop set up near my big girls coop. I free range so the littles stay in, while big girls free range around the little coop and get used to each other that way for a few months.

    Remember there will almost always be a few fights in the beginning - this is why it's called a pecking order. Putting just one baby in there means Ginny only had one thing to focus on showing who is the queen hen! I'd put them all together at the same time in an open space if possible (once they are old enough).

    I've watched my older birds eat a baby wild bird that had been kicked out of the nest....no reason they wouldn't try to hurt/eat a baby chick that's not theirs :/
     
  5. missy1971

    missy1971 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How old are the new
     
  6. missy1971

    missy1971 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How old are the new[/quote
    They are about 3 -4 weeks.
     
  7. MasAhora

    MasAhora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    IMHO 3-4 weeks, is too young. I am currently integrating a previously separated member of the flock, a mama and her 5 week old chick out of necessity, I would have preferred to wait until chick was 8-12 weeks given my flock/coop. Yours do not have a mama to guard them.

    Can you pen them side by side with a make shift coop/crate for the chicks? So they can see each other and the chicks can grow a little.

    Then one evening feed before dark you can open their pen watch everyone eat/mix and make sure they go back to their own coops/crate for the night. If all goes well, leave the temporary pen door open or just close and repeat for a few days. Lots of escape routes and widely spread feeding and roosting spots seem to be key for the young ones.

    Also the little pullet we feel sorry for will eventually show normal pecking-order behaviours with younger chicks/pullets. As a newbie, I have learned all this the hard way.
     
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  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    I integrate chicks that young all the time. The key is a separate coop and run for the chicks. After a few weeks of living next door, they get to have time with the flock in the main run, with the safety of their coop/run to retreat to if needed. Then, after a few weeks of that, they move in with the grown ups. Young chicks are usually completely ignored by the adult birds. It's when they are older that integration becomes more difficult and takes longer.
    The key to any smooth integration is ample space for all and multiple feeders and waterers.
     
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  9. missy1971

    missy1971 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi, i used a smaller pen i already had and put it beside Ginny's big pen, and boy is Ginny talking, she wont even go back into her coop for the night, she has bedded down on the opposite side of her pen in the corner...not sure what she is thinking or doing!.?????..although she did give me her first egg today...i was so excited...LOL its the small things !
     
  10. missy1971

    missy1971 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ok im guessing the reason she has been acting weird is she was getting ready to lay...she gave me her first egg this morning!
     

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