Introducing new hens after loosing 3 within a week.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by flrn, Aug 20, 2014.

  1. flrn

    flrn Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 11, 2013
    SW Florida
    My Coop
    I have just recently lost 3 hens, 2 to a bobcat when they were free ranging, and 1 to heat stroke. I have taken measures to extend the run, and am now taking measurers for heat as well. My question is this: is now the perfect time to introduce new hens to the flock (I only have 3 left) or should I wait? I don't want to shock the girls, but want the transition to go well for both of them. My thoughts are that the pecking order is already disturbed, although my main rule of the roost Eleanor is still here. No roosters in this flock, only hens. Any thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2014
  2. DanEP

    DanEP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2010
    Cadiz Ky
    Well the first thing you need to do is quarantine the new girls for at least 3 weeks to make sure their healthy. Then if you can keep the new girls next to the old girls for a week or so letting them get used to each other thru the fence. After that the easiest way to go is to let the free range together for a few days before moving them in together If this is not an option the then keep them next to each other for a couple of weeks then move the new girls into the coop at night placing them on the roost with the old girls so that they wake up together in the morning
    Either way there is going to be some fussin and fighting going on while they figure out the new pecking order. As long as nobody is bleeding leave them alone to figure it out. The more you interfere the longer it will take for them to sort things out and to settle down into a new flock It can look kind of rough but it's going to happen anyway so they sooner they sort things out the better

    good luck with your new girls..
     
  3. flrn

    flrn Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 11, 2013
    SW Florida
    My Coop
    I have one hen left that's a bully and picks the feathers off the other two girls. Any chance that will change?
     
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    Really, with three hens, I don't get shook about quarantine. I don't buy hens at auctions or swaps, but rather from people like me that don't have their birds exposed to other birds. Can you lose them? Yes, but the odds are not the great, and you don't have a lot on the line.

    I am more of the things are a ruckus now, lets just shake everything up and get it over with. Get similar size hens, get about an equal number, say 3 to replace the ones you have, add them just before dark or after dark, and have a few hideouts in the run.

    As for the feather picker, you might need more protien, or more space. Try a little raw meat.

    Mrs K
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2014
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