introducing new hens to my 3

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by camaro10, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. camaro10

    camaro10 In the Brooder

    May 1, 2010
    Bucksport, Maine
    I have a rooster and 2 hens about 11 weeks old. I bought some more hens about the same age yesterday and the woman suggested I keep them in a cage in the pen area so they can get acclimated. How long should I do this and why do hens not get along with other hens right away? My husband let one out this morning and they went after her right away. So he put her back in the cage.
  2. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Chickens are territorial birds.

    I keep newcomers in a segregation/integration coop and pen. Some folks term it the "Meet & Greet" facility. These are inside the normal run, with their own small, fenced run area. That way the original chickens get to meet and greet them through the poultry fence, hear them, smell them, maybe do a few pecks through the fence, chest bump, all that stuff. But the newbie are safe. After about a week, maybe two, I take down the temporary fence and then the two groups get to mingle. There will still be some pecking order fussing, but far less than if you'd just put them in together.

    They STILL have to establish a new pecking order - that's just chicken nature.

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