My Concerns of Adding New Birds

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by WyattsChickens, Nov 3, 2015.

  1. WyattsChickens

    WyattsChickens In the Brooder

    Nov 1, 2015
    Since our family chicken population depleted from 3 to 1 I am looking to add new chickens, so my last hen, (Goose) has friends, company, and extra body heat for winter. Goose is simply a plain brown hen. I am interested in possibly adding a Buff Orpington, and a white chicken. (Sorry, I am new to having chickens and don't know names of specific breeds although I did learn Buff Orpington from a magazine.) A friend told me about a local farm animal auction that includes poultry. Does anyone have any experience with auctions? Any advice is appreciated.

    If anybody knows where I could get 1-2 pullet-full grown hen in and around Central, PA (Lycoming County) I appreciate the help.

    Thanks, Wyatt
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    I would avoid auctions, most people take there birds there that are useless, as well as being a bad place for diseases, I am always a fan of fresh clean chicks.
  3. chickmomma03

    chickmomma03 Songster

    Aug 8, 2015
    North Carolina
    Stay away from auctions ITA. If it were me I'd look locally for started pullets or pullets that are close to laying.
  4. WyattsChickens

    WyattsChickens In the Brooder

    Nov 1, 2015
    Thanks for the information! I will definitely take that into consideration before I decide to go. What kind of places could I go and get one or two new chickens. Preferably Buuf Orpington, or white:D
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    There are several state chat threads...check into one or all of those:
    advanced search>titles only> Pennsylvania

    You might find a fellow BYC'er close by that can help out.

    Here's some notes I've taken on integration that I found to be very helpful.......
    ......take what applies or might help and ignore the rest.
    See if any of them, or the links provided at the bottom, might offer some tips that will assist you in your situation:

    Integration of new chickens into flock.

    Consider medical quarantine:
    BYC Medical Quarantine Article
    Poultry Biosecurity
    BYC 'medical quarantine' search

    It's about territory and resources(space/food/water). Existing birds will almost always attack new ones.
    Understanding chicken behaviors is essential to integrating new birds into your flock.

    Confine new birds within sight but physically segregated from older/existing birds for several weeks, so they can see and get used to each other but not physically interact. Integrating new birds of equal size works best.

    The more space, the better.
    Birds will peck to establish dominance, the pecked bird needs space to get away. As long as there's no blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down, let them work it out. Every time you interfere or remove new birds, they'll have to start the pecking order thing all over again.

    Multiple feed/water stations. Dominance issues are most often carried out over sustenance, more stations lessens the frequency of that issue.

    Places for the new birds to hide out of line of sight and/or up and away from any bully birds.

    In adjacent runs, spread scratch grains along the dividing mesh, best of mesh is just big enough for birds to stick their head thru, so they get used to eating together.

    Another option, if possible, is to put all birds in a new coop and run, this takes the territoriality issues away.

    For smaller chicks I used a large wire dog crate right in the coop for the smallers. I removed the crate door and put up a piece of wire fencing over the opening and bent up one corner just enough for the smallers to fit thru but the biggers could not. Feed and water inside the crate for the smallers. Make sure the smallers know how to get in and out of the crate opening before exposing them to the olders. this worked out great for me, by the time the crate was too small for the them to roost in there(about 3 weeks), they had pretty much integrated themselves to the olders. If you have too many smallers to fit in a crate you can partition off part of the coop with a wire wall and make the same openings for smallers escape.

    Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
    This is good place to start reading:
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by