Introducing chicks to hens?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by grullablue, May 27, 2012.

  1. grullablue

    grullablue Songster

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    Feb 27, 2008
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    I know y'all here can help me out!

    I've raised two flocks of chickens, but never been in this boat before.

    I have 8, 3 year old RIR and Black Australorp hens. I now adopted 4, one month old columbian wyandotte (that's what she thought they were) chicks.

    I have the chicks in a large brooder in my garage right now.

    Do I need to wait until the chicks are grown to introduce them? Kinda doubtful, but wondered if the hens would "take them under their wing."

    When I do introduce, I'll have to create some sort of cage or something, or maybe use a big dog crate, to put them in the coop in that cage....so wouldn't just throw 'em in.

    Would love ideas from those who have done this before.

    Thanks!
    Angie
     
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité

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    Yes x2. Wait 'till they're bigger before introducing them. And use the dog crate. Big chickens can be mean to youngsters. It's the only thing I don't like about them!
     
  3. Flowerbh

    Flowerbh Crowing

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    I have the same situation. I have been putting them all outside together, but separate them at night. The bigger pullets (13 weeks) pick on the smaller ones(6 weeks) so bad. I really need to do something with the smaller chicks because they are outgrowing there little crate! How old do they need to be and how can I protect them?
     
  4. sumi

    sumi Égalité

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    Keep them in a separate area, within the run if possible. They if they're about 3 months old, mix them with the older hens again.
     
  5. DeannaOR

    DeannaOR Songster

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    We just made a "chicken jail' in our coop today for this purpose. Our coop is 8' x 12' and we had two roosts running the full 12' length along the back wall. We had been talking about making a poop board and decided to turn the area under it into an enclosure. We left the upper roost (the one they all use anyhow) and used the lower roost as the top of the frame for the "jail". I'll post pictures tomorrow if you are interested. I have some babies that are just not quite big enough to be tossed in with everyone else...but too big to be in the brooder. We put them all in the coop tonight, but the little ones are protected in the "jail". This will give everyone a chance to get comfortable with each other without the little ones being beaten up...and hopefully it will make for a smoother transition later. I can also use this as a brooder later if I want...or literally as a chicken jail if one of them gets a wild feather up their keister and is being naughty. It would also be an option for a hen and chicks, so the other hens can't pick on the babies.
     
  6. sumi

    sumi Égalité

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    Good idea [​IMG]
     
  7. Flowerbh

    Flowerbh Crowing

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    DeannaOR, I would like to see the picture of your "jail" area.
     
  8. DeannaOR

    DeannaOR Songster

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    I'll get some today and post later this evening.
     
  9. DeannaOR

    DeannaOR Songster

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    Ok..here are some pictures. The back wall that this runs along is 12' long.

    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2012
  10. Flowerbh

    Flowerbh Crowing

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    I love it! What a great idea! Will have to see if I can do something like that with my coop. Thanks for posting the pictures!
     

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