introducing young pullets to old ones

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by wac, May 14, 2011.

  1. wac

    wac Out Of The Brooder

    May 3, 2011
    My daughter has 2 hens about 1yr. old and I have 25 pullets (4 weeks) that I want to share with her. when and how is best way to do this. Thanks for help I have no clue
  2. mrszlopez

    mrszlopez Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 4, 2009
    im not sure of the "proper" way to introduce them, but i just introduced my 6wk old pullets to our older White Rock & Silkie hen. The big girls pecked once or twice, but then started showing the babies how to scratch & dust bathe. Our white rock actually even nuzzled a few of them ! Its natural for the older ones to peck on the little ones (pecking order & showing whos boss) but so long as it doesnt get overly aggressive, i would just let them be supervised together. good luck !
  3. luvmesomechicks

    luvmesomechicks Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 26, 2011
    Riverside, CA
    Sorry gotta ask.....u say they are 4 weeks old and wanna introduce them to the im gonna assume they are not offspring of the ones u have already?

    Most people here recommend a quarantine of new birds a minimum of 30 days due to possible health issues new birds may have (unseen issues obv). Being that they are only four weeks, unless u hatched them urself u need to quarantine them 30 days. Then introduce them slowly.
    GL op
  4. olliecatch

    olliecatch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 1, 2010
    Olympia, Washington
    We have a little chicken house and a little run inside the big run. That is where we put our hens that have hatched little ones, so they are protected. We have even put younger pullets in there for a week or so. That way they see the big girls and the big girls see them. Then we will open it up and baby sit for a while. Since they have been around each other, not a whole lot goes on. The big girls might do some pecking, but I think thats so the new ones knows whos boss. It seems to work pretty well for us. We havent had any big battles. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  5. NonnasBabies

    NonnasBabies Muddy Acre Farms Premium Member

    Sep 20, 2009
    On the Farm!
    I wouldn't recommend adding them to the big girls till their big enough to defend themselves. I know some people have had luck add way younger chicks with older ones but more often than not it just doesn't work!!
  6. DancingHen

    DancingHen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2011
    Central Oregon Coast
    I am in the middle of doing this same thing right now. I am introducing the new birds by keeping them in a run next to the other chickens so that they can all get used to each other with a fence between them for safety. Chickens can be very aggressive with strangers. I recommend giving them a few weeks with a fence between them. Also, I agree that the younger birds should be larger, at least three quarters the size of the older hens before you remove the fence between them. That way if there is a scuffle or two they younger birds are not so defenseless.
  7. allieloveschickens

    allieloveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 20, 2010
    San Diego
    If possible wait until they are closer in size to the older hens, then put them in a pen inside the coop or run for a week or two so the other birds get used to them, then you can introduce them while free ranging, and eventually put them all in together. I had some very bad luck introducing new birds. I had three 10 month old Barred rocks, and I tried to add two EEs, one who was the same age- got along fine, and another who was only 7 months- at first things were fine, then three weeks into it the BR girls scalped the 7 month old down to her skull, she lived, but it was awful. So just be cautious, some folks have no trouble, but many times older birds can be territorial and quite mean to new ones, especially if they are younger and smaller. Good luck!
  8. cluckiemama

    cluckiemama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2010
    we have 3 barred rock that are one year old (great layers!) and have 8 Ameracuna chicks coming. I was worried about the same thing. I'll have the chicks inside for some time, but have only one coop for them when they are outside at night. So, they'll have to be together. I'm planning to put out a second food dish so they feel like there's no shortage of food.
  9. wac

    wac Out Of The Brooder

    May 3, 2011
    Sorry I didn't give enough info. I ordered 25 day old Buff Orp. & have them in a brooder (4 weeks) My daughter wants to add 6 of them to her coop (2 1 yr. old hens) I felt they should be bigger before trying. Thanks you for your help
  10. Pheatherz

    Pheatherz Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 17, 2009
    I had this same issue last summer. I read somewhere (can't remember where?) to provide the younger birds with an adjoining area (run, etc.) separated with chicken wire, fencing, etc. A hole should be cut in the chicken wire/fencing that is large enough to allow your biggest young chicken to pass through safely, but not so big that your smallest older chickens can fit through. The younger birds can join the flock when they're ready and flee from bullies if they need to. After a few weeks, the pecking order was established with everyone combined in one coop/run.

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