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Pecking order advice....

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by DirtCreature, Mar 26, 2012.

  1. DirtCreature

    DirtCreature Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2011
    Olympia, Washington
    So we have eggs in the bator now, about to add more in the next 4-5 days... BUT, i already have a single full grown hen in my coop and run right now. (she was a rescue) idk how old she is maybe a couple years old. the people that had her before me, the whole flock except her got eaten in the coop by raccoons so my friend asked me to take her. My friend obviously didn't socialize with her chickens like we do, she is a sweet chicken but doesn't want ANYTHING to do with us and keeps her distance from us, (that's fine) although I'm not used to chickens like that. ours always ran up to me and greeted me with love.

    Having this hen isnt ideal, we chose to sell our whole flock last year to be able to start a new one this year, i didnt know i would have any hens at all and figured my babies would go out and discover the coop/run alone and all grow up together...

    My question is, when the time comes for me to put the chicks out in the coop/run are they going to be OK with her? She hasn't showed me any meanness just doesn't want loveys... Since the hen is by herself do you think she will pick on them too much or will the number of chicks vs. the single hen make everything a little more even?

    thanks for all the advice in advance...!

    Last edited: Mar 26, 2012
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    It would be safest to keep them side by side until they are about the same size as she is. You can try mixing them when they are small, but there's no way to predict what will happen. The bigger they are, the better.
  3. loanwizard

    loanwizard Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would fear more for her than them. With the numbers I wouldn't worry too much.
  4. DirtCreature

    DirtCreature Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2011
    Olympia, Washington
    There is no way possible to have them side by side.... that's the only thing. the little ones wouldn't be able to get to the run or vice versa... hmmm. I also cannot fit the brooder into the coop. not enough space to do that. the brooder is almost as big as our coop! LOL. we have chicken mansions here...

  5. DirtCreature

    DirtCreature Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2011
    Olympia, Washington
    anyone else??
  6. chicks47

    chicks47 Out Of The Brooder

    May 3, 2010
    Northern Illinois
    Don't know if you resolved your issue yet. But we are in a semi-similar situation.
    We have 2 hens that are 2 years old now. We just got 9 chicks. We of course want to integrate them in time and have been investigating the best way. Our girls free range now and my husband has really been dead set against building another coop. But I think I have him convinced that there is no other way. It will not be nearly as nice as the main coop and they may end up a little crowded, but they will have to have their own place once they get out.
    Then we plan to free range the babies for a while in shifts with the big girls.. letting them come together.
    We want to create a large penned area so that some can be out free and others contained while they get together, but with the economics of life I am not sure if that will happen this year or not. That would be the most ideal.
    Anyways.. I was wondering about 2 against 9 also. Would the two big girls gang up enough on the little ones? I have read some stories here and plan to just do what we can to bring them together slowly... and hope they all get together sooner than later.
    We have 7 weeks before the babies are out.. so I hope we can work it all out by then.

    Good luck to you too.

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