Older chicken hates babies


Jun 5, 2020
So the chicks (8weeks old) have been moved to the chicken run. I put them in and moved our 2 adult chickens (1year old) into a crate (it's inside the chicken run) so they could get used to the chicks. One adult chicken is... Not a justing well... What should I do? Its been 3 days. She is still charging the babies any time they go near


Scarborough Fair
6 Years
Jul 3, 2016
WA, Pac NW
My Coop
My Coop
She needs more time to adjust to them. My current cranky hen has been having fits over the chicks for 20 days now, but even she can't work up enough energy to harass them all the time. Currently as long as the chicks stay about 3' or more away from her, she ignores them.

How big is your set up (both coop and run)? Any clutter in the run area? Photos can help with troubleshooting.


Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Nov 27, 2012
SW Michigan
My Coop
My Coop
Pics of your set up would definitely be good.

How long were the groups next to each other before allowing them to physically interact?

Here's some tips about.....
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:


Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Mar 20, 2017
One adult chicken is... Not a justing well... What should I do? Its been 3 days. She is still charging the babies any time they go near

Three days with the hens in the cage, and the hen charges when the babies come near the cage?

If so, that hen may have to live in the cage for another week or two.

If one hen is OK, you might be able to let her out sooner.
Dec 30, 2018
SC, Low Country
I would have put the chicks in a pen/crate and not the hens. It's the hens territory and they are probably stressed being locked up when they are used to being out. They are also stewing looking at the new chicks take over they're domain.
The ones I put with my older birds over a year past still get bossed and pecked by the older ones. So the new chicks I have this year I just built their own run next to it and I'll let them free range together when they get older during the day and let them go back to their own coops at night. I didn't want to deal with the constant bickering. LOL.

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