New hen introduction question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by troutlakearts, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. troutlakearts

    troutlakearts In the Brooder

    Mar 15, 2009
    Last Jan. we got 6 pullets and they started to lay in April. One died in October, and we got 3 new pullets about 3 months old. We were told we could put them in the pen after a day or so, if they all could see each other. We put the new pullets in the second or third night... big mistake. The older ones would not let the younger ones near the food nor water. We built a second coop attached to the first and kept them separated by chicken wire. It is now about 6 or 7 weeks they have been separated. I built a sliding door between the coops so that they could see each other. They all now seem to be looking quite a bit at each other through the wire. NOW for the question.... Will it be safe to open the door and let them co-mingle without too much trouble with the pecking order thing. Or should we just leave things the way they are with them separated? They all are now about the same size, but the younger ones have not totally developed their combs. Any advise will be much appreciated!! [​IMG]

  2. monathequeen

    monathequeen Songster

    May 13, 2009
    Burlington KS
    I had four new babys this summer and they were raised by the Mother Hen. The chicks and mom were seperated the whole time as she raised them and she did a spectacular job.
    They were also seperated by a makeship coop and I had chicken wire between them and the other flock. The wholoe time they could see eachother and they were getting used to "others" next door to them.
    At about 9 weeks old , I moved mom back with the others and they welcomed her back with out any hesistation whatsoever. Thank God !!
    Then at about 12 weeks, I let the babys in with the flock and watched them very carefully for several hours. There was some small bickering but that was to be expected and then I just left them alone. To my surprise, they all got along great and now I have a very nice civil flock....(long story about to get short, )

    I would suggest that you leave the babys seperate for another couple of weeks.
    The next couple of weeks will allow them to muture more and they will be then be ready to put up their dukes if need be...Thanks,
    The developement of the combs have nothing to do with integrating them. Its more about maturity and acceptance. By all means, please don't think that you should keep them seperate. They will do just fine and they need to establish a pecking order and the sooner you let them do this, the sooner everyone will live in harmony. Good Luck and keep us up to date.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2009
  3. troutlakearts

    troutlakearts In the Brooder

    Mar 15, 2009
    :)Thanks for your input -- really appreciate it![​IMG]
  4. ging3rhoffman

    ging3rhoffman Songster

    Feb 23, 2009
    My younger girls were not accepted until they were the same size
    as the older girls. The rooster kept chasing them off also..i took them out
    immediately and when they had red combs and were bigger I added them
    and the rooster fell in love with them right away and there was very little
    hen pecking. I did have 2 older hens that i had to take out of the pen and
    kept them seperate for 3 weeks until they were allowed to go back in with

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by