Returning chicken from quarantine?

Justin0271

In the Brooder
Nov 25, 2019
12
5
13
One of our hens had us worried and stumped us for a bit with what was wrong. After much panic and puzzling we finally figured out it was a combination of going broody and developing sour crop at the same time. We've had her separate while we feed her on scrambled eggs and feed mixed with yogurt. She's finally starting to do better, but she's been gone from the flock for weeks. What now? when we finally put her back, how do we make sure she's not bullied?
 

rosemarythyme

Free Ranging
Jul 3, 2016
5,939
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Pac NW
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I assume while you were treating her that she was completely away from the flock (out of line of sight from them?) If that's the case there's a good possibility they will no longer recognize her and you will need to integrate her as you would a new bird. There's some good tips in this article: https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/introducing-new-chickens-using-the-“see-but-don’t-touch”-method.67839/

In the future you may want to consider setting up an isolation cage or ward in your coop or run, which eliminates the need to reintroduce birds while still allowing you to keep a sick or injured bird isolated for their own safety/recovery.
 

FortCluck

Squatch Watchin'
Premium member
Sep 9, 2019
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The see but not touch method is what I'd recommend too. It's basically you adding a new flock member because while that chicken was gone out of sight, the pecking order changed.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium member
7 Years
Nov 27, 2012
71,174
72,245
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This might help:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/introducing-a-single-hen-to-an-existing-flock.71997/

As might these 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 to 'clutter up' the run too:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/a-cluttered-run.1323792/
 

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