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Messing up already? Help?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by AncientWarrior, Jul 25, 2016.

  1. AncientWarrior

    AncientWarrior Just Hatched

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    Jul 25, 2016
    S.W. Missouri
    Hi all glad to be a new member of BYC :)

    We bought our first 8 pullets about 8 days ago (Barred Rock). I immediately (and unexpectedly!) fell in love with them lol So after having them about one week we decided to take the plunge for real and max out our coop and run area which was designed for 25 birds.

    During the first week of having the 8 Barred Rocks we left them in the coop the first 4 days and within 3 days after that they all understood how to use the ramp and where to go to sleep.

    We just got another 17 pullets 2 days ago. Our original BRs are now 3 and 4 weeks old while the new chicks appear to be about 2 weeks old. They are Plymoth Rock (11) and I THINK Sexlinks(6).

    Not knowing any better and thinking they were close to the same age I just put the new chicks in the run the first day and then into the coop the first night. Pretty much the same as I did with the first pullets. They all seem to be getting along fine as far as I can see.

    My question is if I just leave the newer pullets in the coop while the older ones go about their business (free access to coop and run during the day via pop door) will the little ones eventually catch on and copy the behavior of the older pullets?
     
  2. I Love Layers

    I Love Layers Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]



    If they are getting along it should be fine. They will catch on to what the older pullets are doing.
     
  3. AncientWarrior

    AncientWarrior Just Hatched

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    Jul 25, 2016
    S.W. Missouri
    Thanks for the quick reply. This is the first full day we have had the new chicks and thankfully we have a break in the weather today, not too hot. The new 2 week olds are just hanging out in the coop all day eating and drinking and I wasn't sure if I should stick them out in the run today or when. The older pullets go in the coop once in awhile to eat a little and I haven't seen any trouble.
     
  4. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    You will have to watch. The biggest issue you may face is that the littles may get out into the run, and not be able to figure out how to get back in. Are you giving them any supplemental heat? They may be fine, especially as there are so many and we are in the dead of summer, But again, you may need to keep an eye on that as well.
     
  5. AncientWarrior

    AncientWarrior Just Hatched

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    Jul 25, 2016
    S.W. Missouri
    Thanks for the reply. We put them in the run when we got home and everything was fine. Then I had to put them in the coop that first night. It was very funny because the older pullets were trying to get them to come in and seemed irritated that that wouldn't do what they were supposed to [​IMG]Two of the the older BRs sat just inside the pop door as I put the new chicks in as if they too were counting each one lol

    But I am wondering if I should just let them stay in the coop as long as they want to, until they decide to venture out into the run or should I put them out into the run in the morning?
     
  6. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    On the MN prairie.
    I agree with LG about watching them to make sure they get back in the coop if they get out. I'm more curious about the size of your coop and run. You said it was "designed for 25 birds". How did you determine how many birds it can hold? Personally, I'm not a believer in the "number of square feet per bird" theory. I think of it more as a suggestion. I would watch as they get older for bad habits such as bullying, feather picking. Those can be signs of over crowding. How big are your coop and run(feet x feet)? Will they ever be allowed to free range? Do you live where the winters are cold and they will be in the coop for a few months at a time?

    I would let them stay in the coop and come out when they're ready to. As long as they have food and water, they should be fine.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2016
  7. AncientWarrior

    AncientWarrior Just Hatched

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    Jul 25, 2016
    S.W. Missouri
    I did build it based on on-line research.. The coop is 6x8 feet and the run is close to 300 sq ft. (16x16 but one side isn't square) with the goal of allowing 2 sq ft per bird in the coop and 10 sq ft in the run. We're in S.W. Missouri where winters can be a little cold sometimes but last year was very mild all winter.

    As far as free ranging we're still thinking / talking about it.. We have 3 acres but also two dogs that we're not sure about allowing around the chickens yet. Of course I could put the dogs inside for awhile but like I said, just not sure yet.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. AncientWarrior

    AncientWarrior Just Hatched

    17
    2
    16
    Jul 25, 2016
    S.W. Missouri
    I did build it based on on-line research.. The coop is 6x8 feet and the run is close to 300 sq ft. (16x16 but one side isn't square) with the goal of allowing 2 sq ft per bird in the coop and 10 sq ft in the run. We're in S.W. Missouri where winters can be a little cold sometimes but last year was very mild all winter.

    As far as free ranging we're still thinking / talking about it.. We have 3 acres but also two dogs that we're not sure about allowing around the chickens yet. Of course I could put the dogs inside for awhile but like I said, just not sure yet.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Your younger chicks will figure it out, and I do not anticipate to much trouble because your new birds out number your old birds. And they are still quite young. You have a pretty nice set up there, and I am glad that you have an over the top run. It works for me, when you have a lot of brush - you have all kinds of predators, such and owls and hawks, so the over the top is good.

    I think that eventually your coop may be a little small for that many full grown birds. However, you may lose some birds here at the beginning. You are just getting started and you are going to have a pile of eggs in early January I am thinking.

    Have fun with this hobby, and realize that it will grow and change as you get experience.

    Mrs K
     
  10. AncientWarrior

    AncientWarrior Just Hatched

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    Jul 25, 2016
    S.W. Missouri
    Thx Mrs K And yes we have hawks and can hear the owls most all day. Already having a lot of fun. I have found watching chickens is much more fun than watching TV lol
     

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