Reintroducing Silkie to Standard Flock-mates

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by BantamoftheOpera, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. BantamoftheOpera

    BantamoftheOpera Chillin' With My Peeps

    474
    3
    113
    May 24, 2010
    Southern Maine
    I have a 12 week old Silkie that was pecked badly a few weeks ago. We took him out so we could treat his wound and keep him safe until he healed. We have a flock with 6 one year old hens and 3 broodmates. He was attacked by a few of the big hens. He is still missing feathers where he was attacked, but the wound is healed. Should we try to reintroduce him to the flock or will there just be more violent pecking? Will he ever fit in this flock or should we get him/her his/her own bantam flock?
     
  2. DawnCols

    DawnCols Chillin' With My Peeps

    165
    7
    103
    Dec 17, 2010
    I suggest proceeding with caution.

    I was able to re-integrate my polish white-crested bantam with two Rhode Island Reds after they had injured her picking at her head. It took several attempts and a lot of work for me, but in the end, it worked and I have a peaceful flock.

    I used blu-kote to cover the bare spot, but it really didn't work for me until the feathers grew back in. They were attracted to the bare spot, maybe because they had developed a taste for blood.

    The things I did that I think helped:

    I kept the bantam in a tractor right against the chicken run for several weeks. A week before integration, I had the bantam spend time in the run with the others outside foraging (so she would get re-acquainted with the lay of the land.)

    For me, part of the problem was the other chickens were attracted to the white crest feathers, so I sprayed them with blu kote, which gave her the lovely purple hairdo in my avatar pic. I got some Hot Pick spray (which is labelled for "exotic birds"). I started with supervised togetherness time, always spraying her crest first with the Hot Pick. (Tricky to do on a crest--you have to avoid the eyes.) They got a couple pecks in, but they didn't like it (plus I yelled and separated them, which scared them.) I gave them more and more togetherness time, eventually integrating and re-spraying with Hot Pick once a day. After a week of no problems, I stopped the daily Hot Pick, and I haven't had any serious problems since.

    Your mileage may vary, of course.

    Hopefully others will chime in with their experiences.

    Good luck!
    Dawn
     
  3. Elphaba2140

    Elphaba2140 Chillin' With My Peeps

    486
    2
    121
    Mar 20, 2010
    Northern Illinois
    Great ideas DawnCols- I too have a small group of picked-ons that I need to re-introduce for the gazillionth time. One is a Polish-had picked head and bottom. She is a happy girl with the Silkies and another picked on SLW. They have been next to the BIG girls for a month now awaiting the new coop and run to finish. I hope the large space will help with this re-intro. Otherwise these 5 will just have to have their own pen. I have Blu-cote as I bought for the wounds. Thanks for the Hot Pick idea though. Never would have thought to use both.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by