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Introducing new flock members, help!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by PoisonIvy, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. PoisonIvy

    PoisonIvy In the Brooder

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    Jul 7, 2013
    Livingston, Tennessee
    First off, I'm not completely new to having chickens, as I've had my roo & hen for almost a year. But that's just the thing, until today, it's been only those 2, plus 2 female Pekin ducks. My rooster is a Brown Leghorn, and he's a good boy. No human aggression whatsoever. He's not what I would call "aggressive" with my ducks, but he will kind of boss them if they try to boss my hen. The environment my flock lives in is a big fenced in backyard where they free range during the day, with a dog kennel & igloo that they roost in at night.

    That being said, I got a new cockerel & pullet today. They're Barred Rocks, approx 6 months old, and so far appear to be very docile. We thought it would be a good idea to keep the newbies in the pen by themselves for a few days, like we did with our 1st chickens, to acclimate them. Well, when the leghorn noticed that there were new chickens, he flipped his wig. He was clucking & carrying on, kept circling the perimeter of the pen and was all puffed up. He eventually chilled out. He wasn't alone, the hen was checking them out pretty heavily as well.

    So, how long should I keep the existing chickens separated from the newbies? Also, I'm going to remove my Leghorn's spurs later tonight, just in case. Do y'all think this will work out? Any suggestions to help make this as smooth as possible?
     

  2. I am not a chicken, I don't think like chickens, and I am not even sure that chickens have thought processes (yea I know I'll get slammed for this statement) I think that you will have better success mingling two flocks if you just toss them into the pen together and let them figure out what's what and who's who under your watchful eye. Your Brown Leghorn wants to boss the barred rock roo and steal the new roosters hen. Your roo's actions plainly shows this. Your leghorn's actions are a chicken's wolf whistle. The Barred Rock roo is thinking or will soon be thinking the same thing but for now his new surroundings has him temporally flummoxed or unsure of himself. The longer the new roo and hen stays separate the stronger they will believe that they rule the roost in your back yard and I believe the longer it will require before they are comfortable in each others company.
     
  3. PoisonIvy

    PoisonIvy In the Brooder

    32
    2
    24
    Jul 7, 2013
    Livingston, Tennessee
    Well we now suspect that the "pullet & cockerel" might be 2 pullets. And I realize now that they're certainly not 6 months old. More like 3 to 4, tops. Big ol' Rooster Cogburn was totally fine with them today, when they manage to find their way out of their pen somehow. We went ahead & rolled with it, let them free range the yard with the big chickens, and had no problems! [​IMG]
     

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