Introducing Chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by bpoore04, Nov 12, 2019.

  1. bpoore04

    bpoore04 Chirping

    Jun 14, 2019
    I have 7 4 month old chickens that I want to introduce into my flock of 13. It snowed last night so we think it might be easier to let them into the flock of 13 since they aren’t that active since it’s cold. Right now the 7 are in a coop inside the bigger coop and have been for about 2 1/2 months so they can see the other chickens. Should I let them out today in the cold or wait until it’s warmer?
  2. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    I would do it on a day that you have time to check on them every hour or so....

    Make sure you have 2 feeders and 2 waterers to help reduce bullying.
    aart likes this.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    So, do your older birds free range all day...or do you have a run...or...?
    Would love to see pics of your coop inside the coop.

    Sounds like you already have done the first part of......
    Integration Basics:
    It's all about territory and resources(space/food/water).
    Existing birds will almost always attack new ones to defend their resources.
    Understanding chicken behaviors is essential to integrating new birds into your flock.

    Confine new birds within sight but physically segregated from older/existing birds for several weeks, so they can see and get used to each other but not physically interact.

    In adjacent runs, spread scratch grains along the dividing mesh, best if mesh is just big enough for birds to stick their head thru, so they get used to eating together.

    The more space, the better.
    Birds will peck to establish dominance, the pecked bird needs space to get away. As long as there's no copious blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down and beaten unmercilessly, let them work it out. Every time you interfere or remove new birds, they'll have to start the pecking order thing all over again.

    Multiple feed/water stations. Dominance issues are most often carried out over sustenance, more stations lessens the frequency of that issue.

    Places for the new birds to hide 'out of line of sight'(but not a dead end trap) and/or up and away from any bully birds. Roosts, pallets or boards leaned up against walls or up on concrete blocks, old chairs tables, branches, logs, stumps out in the run can really help. Lots of diversion and places to 'hide' instead of bare wide open run.

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