Introducing new chicks to the flock....help?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Scotty16, Oct 30, 2011.

  1. Scotty16

    Scotty16 New Egg

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    We have a flock of 5 chickens Rhode Island Reds, all girls, seven months old and laying great! My son incubated 7 different eggs five weeks ago (3-Barred plymouth rock, 2-golden laced Wyandotte and 3-Buff Brahma. Right now we have the new birds in the garage, my question is how soon until I can put them all together in the big coop?

    Thanks,
    Scotty
     
  2. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Hi Scotty and [​IMG]

    The rule of thumb is that you want the new birds to be close in size to the birds in the existing flock. I know some folks that build a temporary wall consisting of a wood frame with chicken wire, so that the old timers can see the newbies but not hurt them. I use a large dog kennel in my coop for broodies or to protect newcomers temporarily.
     
  3. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You need to keep them separated for a few weeks, in the coop would do, but put the younger ones in a separate cage...so they can see each other but not get to each other.

    I did this: I had the cage in the coop, let the older girls out to free range, shut off the coop and run, then let the younger ones out. I did this for a few weeks, at night I caught the little ones, tucked them back into their cage, then let the big girls in.

    Eventually, a couple weeks, you will have to let them mingle...it is advised they are close to the same size...give the little ones a safe place to run to...in my case it was the cage...they will get pecked, it will break your heart...but its the only way...pecking order must be established.

    Just stand by and watch...make sure they have a place to run to!

    They will get adjusted and learn their place. I have almost 2 flocks now...my main one and the 3 EE pullets...they eat together finally though, but don't free range together.

    [​IMG]

    this was my set up.

    Good luck!
     
  4. darkmatter

    darkmatter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I use this method:

    [​IMG]
     
  5. CapeReds

    CapeReds Out Of The Brooder

    We did the same, but put a devider (plastic wire cloth) in the coop. Next, after a few weeks of adjustment, we cut a hole small enough that only the little ones could pass through and then run back to safety. Worked fine. There was some fear and intimidation at first.
     

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