mixing "chicks" and hens

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by schmism, Mar 5, 2008.

  1. schmism

    schmism Songster

    Feb 16, 2007
    Peoria IL
    im looking for info on how, when, were people have introduced there new chicks (young pullets) to the rest of the flock....

    Ive tried searching but dont quite know what to search for. Im shure the question has been asked before.

    as to my situation.

    I have 2 laying hens, 1 coupe big enough for 8-10 laying large breeds which they currently use. I have one small chicken tractor built for the 2 hens last spring.

    My coupe is built well enough that i can maintain 70+ temps easly when outside temp is 30+ deg. So my new chicks COULD go out as soon as 4-5 weeks old. (ie 1-2 weeks from now)

    hopefully some of you can post some links to other threads.
  2. coffeemama

    coffeemama Barista Queen

    Mar 5, 2008
    This is my first post [​IMG]
    What we have done with success for a number of years is this: We use half of a large plastic dog crate(don't know how many chicks you have), flipped over like a tub. We push the open end up against the wall of the inside of the coop. Cover the top with some woven wire and put in the booder lamp above this. This way the hens have a while to get used to the chicks. We will let the hens outside and lock them out of the main coop, and let the chicks out inside the coop and run, when they are big enough. We have never had any pecking issues or loss of chicks this way, and one or two of our hens always adopt the chicks when we release them into the flock. HTH!
  3. canoetrpr

    canoetrpr Hatching

    Feb 19, 2007
    coffeegirl: How old are your chicks when you release them into the flock?

    I am happy to hear that this is possible. We're looking to get a flock started this year. By next year our pullets will be hens and I'd like to be able to add a batch of chicks to raise for meat every spring. Figured that I would have to have separate facilities which would not make this possible.

    If as you say you can eventually release your chicks with your hens then this sounds workable.
  4. hcammack

    hcammack Crowing

    Oct 5, 2007
    I used the dog crate method also with great succes but the pullets I was introducing where 12 weeks old.

    Good Luck,
  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    What I do is raise my chicks up in a grower pen till about 16 weeks old. That way they are big enough to defend themselves when the adults go to peck on them while establishing pecking order. I however introduce them to common free raining areas at 6-8 weeks old as they have plenty of space to get away from the older ones if they decide to be mean.

    In addition, it is best to wait till about 16 weeks as layer feed has too much calcium for younger birds as they are growing. By 16 weeks, the chicks will be fine on the layer pellets.

    A few threads: I searched " introducing hens" Didn't actually read them all, just picked best topic questions and posted them.










  6. coffeemama

    coffeemama Barista Queen

    Mar 5, 2008
    It has always worked for us-they were on the larger side when we finally did release them(mostly feathered out), and did do at night. I guess the hens just got used to them being in there. There has been a bit of picking a time or two, but we just put the chicks back in their side of the coop for a few more days.
    Last year we used some woven wire to partition off a corner of the coop, then put a piece on top so hens couldn't fly in. When we released chicks, we cut a smaillish hole that only they could get into. This kept hens out of their food, and gave them protection if they still needed it.
  7. schmism

    schmism Songster

    Feb 16, 2007
    Peoria IL
    Well sounds like ill be remodeling the inside of the coupe to get the chicks in.

    Trouble is i didnt take this into account when laying out the inside of the coupe so there are no easy sides/corners/ends to just fence off with some chicken wire.

    but im shure i can come up with something that will work.

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