New member in Michigan

ponygrl6

Hatching
10 Years
Oct 1, 2009
3
1
7
Hi all! My name is Jill and I am a new member to this group...but not really new to chickens. We had chickens years ago, then kinda got bogged down with kids and the farm, and got rid of them. Well, 20 yrs later, the kids are grown and have kids of their own, and we have settled down and decided to get just a few for eggs. I have 4 marvleous hens (red star I believe) who give me 3 to 4 eggs everyday. But the neat part is, I have never had chickens who are as friendly as these girls are. They come running to me when I go into the pen, and even squat down at my feet and allow me to pick them up!! Never, ever thought I would fall in love with chickens, but they have taken my heart. I also have one husband for the same 37 yrs., 2 boys, 3 grandboys, 6 cats, 4 dogs, 4 horses, 2 donkeys, and 2 birds....plus my husband raises cattle, but I don't count them as pets. I live in Michigan, and the weather here is already starting to turn, feels like another bad winter headed this way. I do have a question for anyone who can answer it.....I would like to get a nice rooster to put in with my girls, will they except it? A neighbor recently gave me a hen, as all his chickens were killed by an owl except the one. Anyway, my four girls absolutely wanted nothing to do with her, and I had to send her back. She was a barred rock and they are red stars, so not sure if it was because she looked so much different from them, or just because they have always been together and she was seen as an outcast. Anyway, would appreciate anyones take on this question, will my girls accept a rooster into the flock? Thank you so much, and I really look forward to being a member!!
 

Elite Silkies

Crowing
10 Years
Jun 17, 2009
5,410
54
251
Oklahoma
My Coop
My Coop
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from Oklahoma
 

fldiver97

Enabler
11 Years
Aug 5, 2009
6,520
33,653
1,182
Middleton, WI
My Coop
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from WI. Your girls might like a roo for company. I don't think your hens had a problem with the 'newbie' due to looks or breed.....Chickens have a pecking order and everytime there is a loss or addition to the flock the pecking order has to be re-established.....So most people advise to introduce chickens 'properly' to ensure that everyone is safe and can adjust. Most of the recommendations are for a) a quarantine period, preferably 30 days, for any chickens added. Sometimes it is not immediately clear if a chicken has an illness, parasites or any issues that could be introduced to your established birds.... and b) chickens can bully/hurt other chickens badly. Most recommend to quarantine, then let the chickens share a coop and/or run with a barrier between old and new birds....they can see each other and get used to having new chickens around but they can not bully or pack each other. After a few days you can introduce them, supervised without the barrier (fence, chickenwire.....) and see if they are OK. Some mild pecking or posturing is OK but they have to be separated if blood is drawn or if chicken(s) can not get to food/water du to bullying.....Some recommend to 'sneak' the new birds in the coop after dark so they all wake up together. I have not tried it. I have a couple of chickens in quarantine for another week and then I'll introduce them by placing the 'newbies' in a sectioned off portion of the coop.
If you bring a single rooster in I would think 'the girls' would accept him faster than a hen but make sure the rooster is not too young or small so the hens don't bully him.....I would still introduce them gradually but I'd think they may not need as much time.....
I would also post this question in the 'Managing your Flock' section, I am sure you'll get good input there.....
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Sorry for rambling on and on.....
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