1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

Mixing different kinds of chickens in the same run/coop

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Shag, Jan 31, 2009.

  1. Shag

    Shag In the Brooder

    Jan 3, 2009
    So we went out and got 6 chickens. First we got a RIR and a Golden Buff. Those two have been together in the same run/coop from day one and are doing fine together. Then my wife went and got 2 baby chicks (they're about 3 weeks old now) that are both Ameraucanas and a Silkie that is about 8-9 weeks old now and a Brahma that's also about 8-9 weeks old now. She's keeping the RIR and Golden Buff together right now, keeping the two Ameraucanas together, and keeping the Silkie and the Brahma together. I thought all along when we were building the 8X8 run with the 5X3 coop inside of it that it was going to be for all 6 hens. But now she (my wife) is saying she's nervous about putting them all together. Do y'all think that it would be ok for those six to live together in the same run/coop if we slowly introduce them to each other? Right now the Silkie and Brahma are in a small pen that is just next to the run that the RIR and Golden Buff are in. So they can see each other but are separated by chicken wire. If we let them do that a couple of weeks... and do the same thing with the to Ameraucanas later... and then put them all together will that be ok? I'm sure there's no way to be absolutely certain but I'm just wondering if in general different breed chickens can live together ok. Thanks in advance for advice on this. [​IMG]

  2. asher

    asher Chicken Enabler Extraordinaire

    Jan 26, 2007
    Mountains of NC
    They may be okay, you'll just have to introduce them to each other and, either way, they will go through the pecking order. My main concern with that would be the crested bantams (silkies) whose skulls are more tender to pecking issues.

    Good luck!
  3. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    They will still establish a pecking order. You can try to put the ones of similar age or size together and see what happens. Initially I keep mine in side by side runs where they see each other for a couple of months, mol. The longer the better. I let them range together under supervision at first. If I see any that act very aggressive, they get confined in a chicken jail (tractor). I do have a nest box in the tractor. After several days in the tractor I let them out and range. I have had to re-commit a bird. I have two coops. One is a nursery coop (no nest boxes) and another coop with 6 nest boxes. There are some pictures on my BYC Page. I haven't put any pictures on of the chicken tractor (a modified rabbit's hutch). I make sure the younger birds have places to go when they are ranging, to get away from the older birds. As time goes on they adapt.
  4. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

    May 13, 2008
    you should be ok just watch the silkie close, they will find a pecking order.
  5. Pinky

    Pinky Songster

    Nov 15, 2008
    South GA
    Your chickens should be fine together.Although they will establish a pecking order,that doesn't mean it will be brutal.Most of the time when I introduce new chickens of different ages,the new birds usually get a quick peck or two,and maybe a high speed chase from an older girl.I never had a bird draw blood or serious harm to a new bird,but it depends alot on your birds and their attitudes.If you experience anything serious,you can always separate them an maybe try it again later on.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2009
  6. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    I hate adding birds of different ages.

    I've seen some birds get the cr@p kicked out of them. I just bought some blue kote for one of them today.

    of course 23 birds in a 8 X 12 coop is probably too many.

    We will be rehoming at least 7 in the next couple of weeks. Gotta make room for my blue ameraucanas who will be let out of their pen and put with the rest of the birds the 17th.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by