Introducing one pullet to a mature flock?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Smeamers, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. Smeamers

    Smeamers Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 16, 2009
    Kalamazoo, MI
    This spring we hatched 5 chicks to add to our flock of 13 hens (all about 18 months old). At about 10 weeks of age, we put them in our meat bird tractor near our regular chicken run so the chickens could get to know each other. This lasted about 3 days when I discovered that a predator snatched 4 of the 5 chicks in the night. We brought the lone chick back in to the brooder, poor thing was traumatized. Now, two weeks later, we'd really love to get her together with the flock because she's so lonely.

    I'm wondering if she's big enough to hold her own now? Especially being the only new girl in the coop? I'm assuming that would mean she gets the brunt of the pecking. I don't want to put her back into the tractor because it definitely needs some design consideration.

  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    That can be a rough one. She cannot hold her own at that age. Do you have a way you could house her next to the others but separated by a fence? I'd suggest trying that for a few days, then put one of the lower ranked hens from your flock in with her and see how that goes. Once that is sorted out, put another lower ranked hen in with the two. Then after a while add another one or two. Once you have equal groups, try mixing them. Or if you have to do it away from the main flock, that could work too.

    Orif you could fix that tractor where you have confidence in it, put her and one hen in there for a while. Then leave them together until she is big enough to join the main flock. At least she would have company.

    I think what you are going to try is doable, but there is risk involved. Good luck!

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