Planning on adding four chicks to my flock -- opinions..

10xmama

Songster
10 Years
May 14, 2011
196
41
176
North Florida
My current flock is 21wks old and just getting into a laying pattern. I have 12 chickens: 3 AL, 3BO, 3EE, 3 RS. I am selling 4 of them this weekend to make room for 4 more. I have decided I want to stagger my flock a bit so we will continue to have eggs when others are molting. So, one EE, 2 BO, & 1 AL will be going; and I have placed an order for 2 white leghorns and 2 barred rocks.

The day old chicks will ship the week of 9/30. I will, of course, brood them separately from my current flock. With an age difference of 6m, will it be possible to assimilate the 4 new birds into my current flock of 8; and at what age can I try? I am thinking when the chicks are old enough, I will carry the brooder cage over to my run from time to time -- so my girls can see and get used to the new chicks... but since this is my first time with chickens.... I need confirmation I am thinking this through correctly. Thanks so much!!
 
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10xmama

Songster
10 Years
May 14, 2011
196
41
176
North Florida
The birds I am removing from my flock are healthy but have qualities that I do not think are ideal for the flock or our needs.
 
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Folly's place

Enabler
10 Years
Sep 13, 2011
23,593
39,667
1,106
southern Michigan
I introduce new chicks gradually. They move into the main coop in a large dog crate, in your case maybe at five to six weeks of age, when the heat lamp stage is over. After a few days, I open the cage door to let the little guys out when the older birds are outside of the coop. The babies learn the coop and are locked in their cage at night. As time goes by, they integrate into the main flock, learn to be polite with the older birds, and cease to need thier dog crate. Mary
 

Folly's place

Enabler
10 Years
Sep 13, 2011
23,593
39,667
1,106
southern Michigan
I introduce new chicks gradually. They move into the main coop in a large dog crate, in your case maybe at five to six weeks of age, when the heat lamp stage is over. After a few days, I open the cage door to let the little guys out when the older birds are outside of the coop. The babies learn the coop and are locked in their cage at night. As time goes by, they integrate into the main flock, learn to be polite with the older birds, and cease to need thier dog crate. Mary
 

10xmama

Songster
10 Years
May 14, 2011
196
41
176
North Florida
Thanks. So when the older ones are out foraging and you let the little ones out in the coop, do you close the door so the chicks can't get out and big ones cannot get back into the coop?
 

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