my chickens are fighting my new hen. Why?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by dbragg, Dec 8, 2016.

  1. dbragg

    dbragg Just Hatched

    Nov 27, 2016
    Reidsvill, GA
    How do I get a new 4 month old hen in the pen with my 9 chickens that are 10 months old without them fighting? Is she to young or what do I need to do?
  2. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    Howdy dbragg

    At 4 months of age she should be OK but being on her own will be tough as she will not have anyone to buddy up with.

    Where did you get her from? If outside sources, have you put her through a quarantine period? She may have something nasty that you do not want her to share with your existing flock.

    I have not integrated one chicken but I use the ‘look but not touch’ method of integration using wire or a crate etc so that they can get used to each other without the threat of injury. I keep them separated in this way for at least a week.

    I let the existing flock out for a free range while the newbies are locked in the coop and run. This gives the newbies the opportunity to explore and feel comfortable in what will be their new home without the threat of being picked on and also learn where all the good hiding spots are.

    Same with free range, but reversed; I let the newbies wander around the garden while the existing flock are locked in. Granted, the existing flock have a good whinge about this ;) but again, it gives the newbies chance to explore, get settled and find all the good hiding spots without being picked on.

    I find that free ranging is a good opportunity to let everyone get to know each other .. space is a great tool when integrating.

    There will probably still be bickering while the pecking order reestablishes itself when they are integrated, but it should not be quite as brutal.

    Also, when they are integrated into the run and coop, for a couple of months I ensure that there is more than one source of water and food, just in case the newbies are being bullied away from either.

    Hope that helps [​IMG]
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  3. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    She is not too young, but integrating one pullet can be a little problematic. What is needed is lots of space, so the newbie can get out of the way of the others, places of refuge in the run (perches etc) and multiple food stations.

    Here are some links that you may find helpful on the subject of integration
    2 people like this.
  4. zekaryah

    zekaryah Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 7, 2016
    MC DONALD tenneessee

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