Introductions and Pecking Order

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by SterlingAcres, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. SterlingAcres

    SterlingAcres Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 17, 2008
    Poconos, PA
    How nasty is this supposed to be? I've been treating my new pullets for legmites (in the event it's not just dry skin). The ones that look fine now, I put into the chicken barn. I have 2 that are laying, 1 that is not.
    My EE rooster, Cedric, could not be more full of himself. He's crowing his head off. The roos are all fighting now (5) over what appears to be... just the laying hens?! The ladies put up a good fight, held their own and bunkered down into a nest box.

    Just how nasty is this introduction phase supposed to get? Lupin tore a few feathers out, my buff orp roos are just trying to suck in air and look big (omg is it funny), Godric hasn't really bothered them but is fighting with Lupin now... and Cedric is the only one that gets very close and crows and bobs his head to them.

    I suppose the roos know they're sexually mature hens?
    My orp pullets don't have much interest in the new additions. Some ruffled feathers, but that's it.
     
  2. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

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    Mar 3, 2008
    It can get nasty if you just suddenly dump the new birds in with the old. But if you can isolate the new ones inside the pen - like a small tractor in the run so they can see each other, but not get at each other - for a week or two, they will get used to each other and not fight (as much). Better yet, when you do integrate them, do it at night when they're sleepy... they'll wake up to new roommates with minimal squabbles. [​IMG]
     
  3. SterlingAcres

    SterlingAcres Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 17, 2008
    Poconos, PA
    Well, I put them out there early this morning after I opened the pop door. I just went out to check on them. I haven't seen any fighting. Cedric and Captain are DANCING for Luna (who isn't laying, but they don't dance for the buffs, so maybe they know something I don't). Bellatrix and Crookshanks are the layers, they're checking out the roosts and for not being very friendly, were pretty happy to see me when I opened the door. Meaning, they BOTH jumped at me and wanted to be held. Really weird.

    When the other 2 pullets legs look better and I introduce them, I'll make sure it's at night. Thank you very much for the advice [​IMG] Novice here. [​IMG]
     
  4. Buff Hooligans

    Buff Hooligans Scrambled

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    Since this topic (introducing new chickens) seems to come up so often, chickens being who they are!, I wrote to Nifty-Chicken to volunteer to do a Learning Center page on it.

    I've printed out tons of into on it and am in the process of editing and compiling the info.

    Keep your eye out for it...
     
  5. nakactress

    nakactress Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 9, 2008
    Utah
    Cool idea..a learning page about it, would be fantastic.

    I introduced 5 new chickens to my already 4 and it took a long while. I kept them separate for a good 6 weeks(They've seen each off an on while the younger one grew) and we still had pecking injuries. Things were going well until last week when 3 of my older ones started ganging up on one of the girls. It got so bad that she stopped eating and drinking. I have her in the coop separated now and she's doing better but yesterday she escaped because I came out with treats and again she was ganged up on. I'm not sure what to do anymore.
     
  6. Mrs MIA

    Mrs MIA Chick Magnet

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    I've also found that "safety in numbers" helps, too. I've introduced 5-10 new birds at a time to the layer flock (just put them out without any introduction time), and they don't seem to be bothered as much as one or two.
     

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