Older chickens attacking new chicks and eachother


8 Years
May 26, 2011
I have three RI Reds that are 2 yrs, and 5 not quite sure that are a year. My new chicks are 5 1/2 weeks so I moved them outside this weekend. The big ones seemed ok at first, then we found one of the babies dead in the yard, pecked to death. I wasn't positive that maybe one of them might have stepped on her and broke her neck, but then the next morning I watched as the big ones were trying to attack a baby. Did I put them together too soon? The big ones all of a sudden have feathers missing and big red spots on their chests. I believe they have started attacking eachother too. Is this normal? I have seperated the babies from the bigger ones again, just to be careful. Any ideas???? I am really ticked that they killed one of my babies.
In my opinion yes that's too soon. Did you have them near or next to each other before putting them together? I always have a mesh divider in my run so that new birds and old birds can see each other but not touch! I do it for at least a week before putting them together.
I'd say it was way too early to integrate, we usually do the viewable separation method until the new birds are 75% the size of the existing birds.
my big kids ( now 10 weeks ) are not nice to my young kids ( 5 and 7 weeks) I have them in the same run but unable to get to each other trying to get them used to the little guys.. I asked Nadine about this as well and she suggested to me that keep them separated but still see each other till the little guys get to be close to the same size and will be able to stand up for them selves.. so thats the plan i will also keep them in 3 different pens as adults too..

Ive worked too hard to have the big kids kill the little ones..
good luck with yours..
BB )O(
Chicks should not be in with adult chickens. Yes, the adults will kill them, as you have found out. They should not be integrated until they are the same size. About 5 - 6 months old is the earliest I put chicks with adults, for many reasons.

Sorry for your experience. Hopefully you can keep them separated.
Best wishes and good luck with your flock.
Thanks for the help, I'll pull them apart again. I put them together last year this early without any problems. I must have gotten really lucky.

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