New additions

Scol86

In the Brooder
Oct 12, 2019
14
20
24
Vermont
Hi everyone,

we have (had?) a small flock with a few hens and a roo, 3 Pekin ducks & 2 khaki’s. Recently in rural Vermont there was a “farm” where a hoarding situation was occurring and the critters needed a new home. So, we took in 4 muscovy’s and and about 15 hens. We have the two flocks separated until everyone is settled. The new additions have Always lived outside without shelter, and didn’t get the concept of the flock feed we are supplying. They have been inspected and deemed healthy by the vet. They appear friendly with people. Can anyone give me some advice on how to incorporate my two flocks? Thanks so very much!
 

BarnhartChickens98

Aspiring Chickenologist
Premium member
Oct 28, 2018
1,803
5,065
362
Manhiem, Pennnsylvania
Are they hens or drakes?
I don't know how long you have had them but keep them separated for at least two weeks to make sure they don't transfer anything. I would put them in "see but don't touch" pens so they can learn of the others existence. I usually let them free range together for a bit them move them together.
 

Scol86

In the Brooder
Oct 12, 2019
14
20
24
Vermont
Are they hens or drakes?
I don't know how long you have had them but keep them separated for at least two weeks to make sure they don't transfer anything. I would put them in "see but don't touch" pens so they can learn of the others existence. I usually let them free range together for a bit them move them together.
I wasn’t sure how long the quarantine should last, so thanks!!
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
74,416
81,067
1,607
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
Hopefully you have lots of space.
Here's some tips:

BYC Medical Quarantine Article


Integration Basics:
It's all about territory and resources(space/food/water).
Existing birds will almost always attack new ones to defend their resources.
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.

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

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 copious blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down and beaten unmercilessly, 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'(but not a dead end trap) and/or up and away from any bully birds. Roosts, pallets or boards leaned up against walls or up on concrete blocks, old chairs tables, branches, logs, stumps out in the run can really help. Lots of diversion and places to 'hide' instead of bare wide open run.
Good ideas for hiding places:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/a-cluttered-run.1323792/
 

Scol86

In the Brooder
Oct 12, 2019
14
20
24
Vermont
Hopefully you have lots of space.
Here's some tips:

BYC Medical Quarantine Article


Integration Basics:
It's all about territory and resources(space/food/water).
Existing birds will almost always attack new ones to defend their resources.
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.

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

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 copious blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down and beaten unmercilessly, 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'(but not a dead end trap) and/or up and away from any bully birds. Roosts, pallets or boards leaned up against walls or up on concrete blocks, old chairs tables, branches, logs, stumps out in the run can really help. Lots of diversion and places to 'hide' instead of bare wide open run.
Good ideas for hiding places:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/a-cluttered-run.1323792/
Definitely have plenty of space, no worries there. Great article! Thanks!
 
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