Introducing new chickens (adults) to the flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jimwaltman, Jul 14, 2018.

  1. jimwaltman

    jimwaltman In the Brooder

    Jul 8, 2018
    Flora, MS
    I have 3 white californian chickens in a TSC coop which are laying good. I was given 4 Rhode Island Reds and a Orpington. I added the Orp to the coop to test the waters and immediately the 3 Cal hens attacked her. I rescued the orp and seperated them temporairly. Should I add them all at the same time? Only have one coop. I could let the RIR's range during the day and roost in the coop at night?

    Checked my "backyard chicken book" with no result
    Would appreciate advice
  2. New2Chicks97

    New2Chicks97 Songster

    Jul 3, 2018
    Washington State
    We had luck integrating the new year old Favaucana girl we adopted into our flock by putting her with our girls while free ranging. They seemed to accept her fine and with no big fights.

    Almost half of our girls are Easter Eggers and the most chill girls. They don’t seem to care overly much about flock power or order. They just do their own thing and enjoy life.

    Now the Wyandottes, Buff Orpingtons & Sexlinks had to teach her where she fit in. They weren’t overly mean just a chase or two and a few pecks here and there.

    The funny thing is that now half of the girls follow her around and let her be the trail boss when free ranging and she is the roosters best buddy.
  3. Colorado Chick

    Colorado Chick Songster

    Sep 27, 2014
    Introducing them all at once in a large area with plenty of places for the new girls to run and hide always seems the least stressful. So put the new girls in a large area first, then when they know the area for bit (few hours) bring the old girls in. It will also help if everyone can see everyone else the whole time.
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!

    Chances are your TSC coop is not big enough for 7 full grown birds. Dimensions and pics of coop would help us help you figure out if it is and what to do if it isn't.

    Integrating new birds works best with extra space...lots of it.

    Here's my notes on.....
    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.

    This used to be a better search, new format has reduced it's efficacy, but still:
    Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
    This is good place to start reading, BUT some info is outdated IMO:
  5. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    Adding more birds to less birds is better. Chasing and pecking and being mean takes a lot of energy, and with a lot of new strangers, well it wears out the originals. Spreads the pecking out.

    Space is a key issue, and multiple feeders and waters, and hide outs.

    Mrs K

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