Our neighbors just gave us 4 chickens...1 rooster, 3 hens. We went ahead and rigged something up in one of the barns to keep theirs separate from ours. They had been kept in a rabbit sized cage and only fed scratch. These are full size, laying hens and a very big rooster. Now for the questions! 1. All 4 are missing their tail feathers, with the rooster looking the worst. Could this be because of the close confinement they had? Right now they are in a very large spot, half grass, half dirt, lots of room up and around. What should we do? We do not currently have any pine tar. Is there anything else we can use until we pick some up? Vasoline? 2. They are eating their eggs. Aside from standing out there all day long to grab the eggs right away, is there anything we can do to prevent this? 3. Will going from only scratch to free ranging with supplement feed be bad on their systems? Or will only good things happen? 4. At what point can we start introducing them to our flock? 5. Coming from such close quarters in an area shared with peafowl and pheasants, should we be on the safe side and dust for fleas and mites? 6. If the rooster proves to be too mean to our children, can we eat him? I have heard that full grown roosters are not good for eating. Thanks!