Reverse the Introduction of hens to pullets

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Dtrain28, Jul 6, 2011.

  1. Dtrain28

    Dtrain28 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 26, 2010
    I had a question.... I have two hens that are a year old and 3 pullets that are 8 weeks... I have been introducing the pullets daily this week supervised with minimum incidents ( a little posturing and pecking from my older Orp)

    My question is, should I take the hens out of their coop and put the 3 pullets in their place? The older hens would live in another cage for a week or two and then be re-introduced to their old coop......

    Does this make sense or is it too stressfull on my older hens?
     
  2. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chickens can be territorial so if you place the new brood in the coop too soon you may start a turf war.

    I integrate my flocks of different ages by having an interim run where I keep the new, younger birds locked in for a minimum of 1 week so they can see each other side by side. Then I gradually let both parties out to free range together under timed, supervised visits. After a week of that everyone is acclimated and can range together although they still roost in their segregated pens. After that I start slowly moving the younger birds in with the adults at night until I close off the interim pen all together.

    The process takes about 4 weeks but I've never had a bird hurt this way and the stress on both age groups is substantially reduced by the gradual introduction.
     
  3. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Forgot to say,

    what I explained above is similar to what you proposed only the younger pullets would be in the dog cage (although it would be best of you hooked 2 really big dog cages (48") together as their run. One would be too small.
     
  4. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Actually, I did basically what the OP suggests, and it seemed to do the trick. When I put the pullets in the run, the original hens were awful to them, really beating them up, literally. So, I caged the original hens in a small dog kennel inside the run for 3-4 days and let the pullets have the run of it. Seemed to give the older birds a bit of attitude adjustment. When I put them all together again, a couple of minor scuffles the first day, then peace reigned again.
     
  5. Dtrain28

    Dtrain28 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 26, 2010
    Thanks for the info....The Coop is not a huge coop 3 ft tall by 4 ft wide x 8 ft long......it's going to be tough to put a cage "in " the coop....what about a larger cage next to the coop? or does that defeat the purpose
     
  6. Bravo

    Bravo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Next to the coop [​IMG] The goal is to let them see each other without having a chance for the younger ones to get picked on.

    Best of luck!
     

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