NEED ADVICE: Ordering Chicks from a reputable hatchery and then introducing them to my established F

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Barred4Scarlett, Sep 22, 2016.

  1. Barred4Scarlett

    Barred4Scarlett New Egg

    Sep 22, 2016
    I have had several flocks of birds in my life, but I always started with the same birds, and kept them until their time had come, and then started over.

    I have never introduced chicks to an established flock.

    I have read the articles here about waiting until they are at a minimum of 16 weeks old, which I understand. Just want to know where to go from there.

    I am fortunate to have a very large yard with vegetable gardens, and plenty of trees, shrubs, firewood, stumps, and all kinds of stuff for climbing, foraging, playing, etc. My flock free ranges from sun up to sun down, and go in their coop at night.

    I have Rhode Island Red and Barred Rocks, currently. My Roo is a Barred Rock. He's a big baby, total Momma's boy, but takes care of his girls very well.

    I would also like to know your opinions on introducing another Roo into the flock, I was thinking of getting a Rhode Island Red Rooster as a chick, and then raising him with everyone, but I dont want to upset Consuelo, or the dynamic of my flock. I dont HAVE to do it, but I wanted to hear what all of you thought.

    As far as the breeds of chicks I was going to purchase, I was looking to get :
    more Barred Rocks
    Buff Orpingtons
    Silver Laced Wyandottes

    I would love to get some Black Stars but there aren't any available currently.

    Okay, I will ramble forever about my chickens.
    Thank you for any and all advice you can offer! Looking forward to many more conversations!
  2. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

    I haven't had roosters but from reading various posts on BYC, sometimes multiple roos get along and sometimes they don't. Definitely get your all new and older birds used to each other before trying to mix them. Dividing the coop and run with a barrier where they can see each other (but not touch) will be helpful with that. It sounds like you have lots of room for them to all spread out and that will help too.

    Good luck to you, I hope it all goes well!
  3. Folly's place

    Folly's place True BYC Addict

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    I do this every year, both with hatchery chicks, and broody raised chicks in the flock. My coop and run can be split into four sections, and the hatchery chicks are in one section at two to three weeks, with a heat lamp. They can see, hear, and be seen by the flock. When the babies are about six weeks of age they can go out to free range with the big birds, and they return to their section at night. Plenty of space, very little drama, and no injuries. By winter they are integrated into the flock, although 'family groups' will stay together for a long time. I've always got multiple cocks, and it takes time to sort out who stays and who moves on. Mary
  4. MrAnimal Farm

    MrAnimal Farm New Egg

    Mar 24, 2015
    My Coop
    We do the look but can't touch method. We section a part of the coop off with chicken wire or another type of fencing (could also use a pet crate). You can put the newbies in this area where they can be seen, but not picked on. After a week or so, we open the door/gate/opening of the sectioned off area and after a few days everyone will co-mingle with very few issues.

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