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Merging flocks..

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by GarthRyan, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. GarthRyan

    GarthRyan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello, I have two "batches" of chickens. One batch being 7-8 months old (7 hens, 2 roosters) and the other almost 5 months old (3 hens, 2 roosters). My question is how could I go about putting the younger ones in with the older ones?

    I've had the younger ones in a small pen touching the older chickens' pen for over a month and they SEEM okay with each other. Seen them give each other some rude looks though..
    Should I spend the time and energy building a new pen or should I put one at a time in a small wire cage in with the others for a little while then release them in one by one?

    There are two roosters in each batch.. they're the ones I'm thinking will cause the problems.
     
  2. chad-o

    chad-o Chillin' With My Peeps

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    As long as they have had a chance to socialize at a distance the hens should be fine. Your problem is the roosters. You have way too many one possibly two would be enough.
     
  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    The age disparity is in your favor with respect to roosters. The transfer process is reversed relative to how I would do it. I would add older to smaller singly over a few days. As you describe, the younger transfers are likely to get their butts kicked.
     
  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    I see possible wrecks with the roosters. Could get very ugly, out of no where.... If I were in your set up, I would choose a rooster to be the flock roo and if possible, I would choose one of the younger roosters. So by that I would cull the others.

    Mrs K
     
  5. GarthRyan

    GarthRyan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks everyone. I'd already been thinking about getting rid of some roosters but I don't think anyone would wanna buy roosters and we don't want to eat them but what if I just turned a few loose? Think they would stay around?
     
  6. Wrooster

    Wrooster Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You don't say where you are but there is at least one community in Florida overrun with feral chickens. It would only take your roosters and one hen. Seriously, whether it's roosters, dogs, cats, pythons or alligators, "relocating" them by turning them loose isn't fair to anybody. Not the critter, not the other critters in the area and not the humans who will be affected.

    If you can't bring yourself to cull them yourself, offer them for sale cheap or free and don't ask what the buyer will do with them.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. GarthRyan

    GarthRyan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hold up a minute. I'm not saying I take them and drop them off somewhere. I'm saying I let them loose on my 15 acres where I live and let them be "free range" chickens. Still feed and water them though and them still be mine and under my care.

    I live in central Alabama and us in my area don't put up with stray animals and deal with them accordingly. If they come back and harass my animals after being scared away a few times that's it. They're gone. So I'm not going to put my animals in danger or leave them without the needed resources to live.
     
  8. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    They will stay around. Only concern beyond predator management will be fights through wire of pen. I have mine under much harsher conditions than you and it is pretty easy to keep them around and in the top of health. I currently have had birds out continuously free-range for last four years and they are the easiest to keep in good feather. Shutting that down for first time a while because have to be penned when I leave town for extended periods.
     
  9. crazyfeathers

    crazyfeathers Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I understood that you meant free ranging the roosters. I have 2 roosters in my flock a huge one and a small one the exist wonderfully together. I plan on adding my young ones in the spring with my old flock using the buddy system. I have had good luck by putting in 2 New hens whom get along with each other in with the older flock. They have a buddy this way and will not be lonely or picked on as much. Hens I think are worse than roosters when trying to acclimate New hens into the flock. Best of luck to you.
     
  10. GarthRyan

    GarthRyan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks everyone. I think I'm just going to make a new pen, i have one lakenvelder in with my older chickens that has been with them all of their lives but she's a lot smaller than everyone else and gets picked on and quit laying eggs which i figure is due to stress and i think if i put her with the other chickens she might be able to be something more than the lowest in the picking order like she is now and she might start laying again. Plus that would have all of my white egg layers in one pen and brown egg layers in the other.

    Right now she's with 3 barred rock hens and 3 black australorp hens and 2 BA roosters. If i put her in with the others she'll be with 2 white leghorn hens a brown leghorn hen and a white leghorn rooster and an "easter egger" rooster.
     

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