Introducing chicks to hens?

grullablue

Songster
11 Years
Feb 27, 2008
326
6
154
Madison, Wisconsin
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
 

sumi

Rest in Peace 1980-2020
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,155
25,419
1,302
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!
 

Flowerbh

Crowing
8 Years
Mar 24, 2012
5,556
1,815
381
Dawsonville, GA
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?
 

sumi

Rest in Peace 1980-2020
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,155
25,419
1,302
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.
 

DeannaOR

Songster
7 Years
Apr 19, 2012
968
34
176
Colton, Oregon
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.
 

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