1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Mixing old and new

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by bootsuu, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. bootsuu

    bootsuu Out Of The Brooder

    75
    0
    39
    May 12, 2009
    Utah
    Hi all,

    I'm kinda stuck on the idea of integrating a lone hatch with the rest of my flock. I have 4 EE's that are about 8 months old now, and they're fine and dandy living outside in my coop and run.

    I hatched a baby Australorp about 2 months ago (2 months and 2 weeks). I no longer have space to keep him separate and have to integrate him into my existing flock.

    Any ideas on how to go about this? So far I've had them spend time with each other, and no problems so far. Should I be looking for something specific? Should I be watching out for any tell-tale signs of overpecking / abuse?

    Is 2.5 months too early for a baby chicken to be outside in winter weather? He/she seemed to weather the night just fine, but I don't know how early the warning signs would be appearing.

    Thanks!

    Bryan
     
  2. PandoraTaylor

    PandoraTaylor RT Poultry n Things

    Jun 29, 2009
    Alaska
    wait until they go to roost at night, then add the baby to them.
    in the morning watch them......

    I introduced 2 adults to my flock that way, no major fighting! lol
     
  3. bootsuu

    bootsuu Out Of The Brooder

    75
    0
    39
    May 12, 2009
    Utah
    I haven't seen any major fighting yet, but the adults seem to peck at him more than they peck at each other. I haven't seen any blood yet, or wounding. Is there anything specific I should be looking for or trying to pin down?

    The poor guy is currently hiding between the food dispenser and the water dish so that he doesn't get chased around [​IMG]
     
  4. Blue_Myst

    Blue_Myst Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 5, 2009
    If you have an area you can section off, or even a dog crate, you can put the newcomer in it and place it in the coop. That way there's a "look but don't touch" period in which they can get used to each other and become one flock. This chick is by itself, and it's going to have a lot of disadvantages.

    If you think they are ready to be integrated, give them plenty of space. I let mine free range together the first time I integrated them, and there were a few scuffles, but there was plenty of room to blow off steam and they got it sorted out in no time.

    8 weeks is usually to maximum amount of time it takes to fully feather out, so he should be fine weather-wise as long as it isn't sub-zero or anything [​IMG]

    I haven't seen any major fighting yet, but the adults seem to peck at him more than they peck at each other. I haven't seen any blood yet, or wounding. Is there anything specific I should be looking for or trying to pin down?

    Keep a VERY keen eye out for blood, being so outnumbered, he could get killed if he gets a wound that others want to peck at. It's natural for them to peck at him a little more, but as long as they aren't being overly aggressive (being in "cockfights" or pursuing relentlessly) you're definitely in the right direction!

    Best of luck to your little guy!​
     
  5. bootsuu

    bootsuu Out Of The Brooder

    75
    0
    39
    May 12, 2009
    Utah
    Well, it happened.

    Walked in on Saturday morning (after 3 days without issues) to find my baby Dean hiding under the suspended feeder. They had pecked at Dean's shoulders (both) and legs. Luckily Dean hid / was found before they could peck more. $120 vet bill later (I'm a sucker for wounded animals, even if I plan to eat him/her in a few years anyway) and the wounds are clean, and the chicken is now back in the brooding box (3x4x3) box, with a brand new lid and roost. Gonna let it get a few more months behind it before I put it back in with the other 4.

    Maybe this time I'm going to pull the least dominant chicken from the established flock and put it in with the baby for a day or so, then put them both back in to the main coop.

    Thanks for the advice, guess my hens just really wanted to be pecky that morning. Still not fully sure if Dean is a boy or a girl, but the vet thinks girl, and so do I.

    Boots
     
  6. SherrynBill

    SherrynBill Chillin' With My Peeps

    37
    3
    54
    Apr 27, 2014
    I have done a lot of reading about raising chickens and good advice has been plentiful. This is my first time raising chickens. I bought six tetra tint chicks when they were two days old from Tractor Supply Company. My grandson wanted them so bad even though I had six Leghorns and six red comets coming in a few weeks from Countrymax. The six tetra tints did fine in the house and then were brought outside to a penned in coop. They have a 10 by 10 foot shed and a large run outside with another open coop to hang out in. There is also a purchased coop that I just put six white Leghorns and six red comets in. The six 2 month olds can see and talk to the other twelve 2 week old chicks but can't get at them. I had the twelve chicks in a playpen outside the coop for a few days first before putting them inside the purchased coop which is inside the run. The six older chickens tried pecking through the wire at first but then settled down because it was getting near dusk and they sleep inside the shed. I will keep them separated for as long as it takes and introduce them face to face when I feel it's safe. I have one really dominate tetra tint but she would rather sit on my arm than argue with the new chicks. Hopefully all will be well in a few weeks. They will all get plenty of love and attention.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2014
  7. gander007

    gander007 Chicken Obsessed

    [​IMG]
    These 3 1/2 week old chicks are in the introduction cage and
    in another 3 weeks will go to the grow out cage with other
    older chickens ....




    [​IMG]
    I put these guys out at 3 weeks and now they are 18 weeks
    and it worked out just fine ....




    [​IMG]
    With proper introduction most all can get along and also
    plenty of room as everyone likes freedom [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by