introducing new hens(younger or older) to my flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by stevin, Jul 28, 2010.

  1. stevin

    stevin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 11, 2009
    Dartmouth, Ma
    i have a flock of 6 RIR pullets and 1 roo approx 16 weeks old. i'm planning on picking up a couple of hen/pullets to expand my flock. i'm trying to find hens that are similar in age and size but nothing is guaranteed. should i have anything to worry about when introducing the new birds? fighting? diseases? what kind of preperations should i do?

    thanx
     
  2. purelypoultry

    purelypoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 2, 2008
    Fremont, Wisconsin
    It is reccomended that you quarantine any new comers to your chicken flock so that you don't give your current birds any diseases that the new ones might have. Most poultry flock owners do not quarantine and are very successful most of the time but it isn't ideal. The new birds might fight with the original flock as in any animal kingdom, there is always a pecking order. You might try integrating the two different flocks of hens and seeing how it goes. If there is chicken fights going on then separate the mean ones out to a different pen.
     
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    After quarantine, and that means away from your flock, the best way I've found to integrate new chickens into the flock is to set them up into a separation/integration "meet & greet" area within your run. I have grow-out coop(ish) buildings, like the duck house which is only 3 ft by 3ft and 2 ft tall. (The ducks never used it...) It's raised up on concrete blocks. Then I take chicken wire or other poultry fencing and garden stakes, and put up a fence around the duck house but within the entire run. That's where I put the new chickens for about two weeks. They get their own feeder & waterer.

    The newest and original chickens can all see each other, hear & smell each other, and even chest bump through the temporary fencing without any injury occurring. By the time I take the temporary fencing down, there is very little chaos when they can all mingle together.

    It's like, "Oh, it's just you, not a complete stranger," and while the pecking order must still be adjusted, there's far less actual, all out warfare and fighting.
     

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