Rhode Island reds and black australorps

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by barnbum204, May 28, 2016.

  1. barnbum204

    barnbum204 In the Brooder

    Jun 27, 2015
    Hello I currently have 9 Rhode Island red hens and one rooster. Me and my fiancé are looking to phase out some of the reds and replace with a different breed of chicken. I really would like to get some black australorps as I really have fallen in love with them sense we first got chickens. Would this breed be a good match with the reds? Is there any other breeds that would get along with the reds as well? All of the reds are just over a year old

  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Most breeds will get along just fine.
    Some breeds have a reputation (not always accurate) for being more aggressive, RIR is one.
    But it's not so much about breed, as it is about territory,....and individual birds and their temperaments.

    An existing flock will be aggressive to new birds brought into the flock, they are only defending their resources(space, food,water),and it is totally normal regardless of any breed.

    Integrating new birds into the flock is best done with separate but adjacent housing and lots of space.

    Here's some notes I've taken on integration that I found to be very helpful.......
    ......take what applies or might help and ignore the rest.
    See if any of them, or the links provided at the bottom, might offer some tips that will assist you in your situation:

    Integration of new chickens into flock.

    Consider medical quarantine:
    BYC Medical Quarantine Article
    Poultry Biosecurity
    BYC 'medical quarantine' search

    It's about territory and resources(space/food/water). Existing birds will almost always attack new ones.
    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. Integrating new birds of equal size works best.

    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 blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down, 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 and/or up and away from any bully birds.

    In adjacent runs, spread scratch grains along the dividing mesh, best of mesh is just big enough for birds to stick their head thru, so they get used to eating together.

    Another option, if possible, is to put all birds in a new coop and run, this takes the territoriality issues away.

    For smaller chicks I used a large wire dog crate right in the coop for the smallers. I removed the crate door and put up a piece of wire fencing over the opening and bent up one corner just enough for the smallers to fit thru but the biggers could not. Feed and water inside the crate for the smallers. Make sure the smallers know how to get in and out of the crate opening before exposing them to the olders. this worked out great for me, by the time the crate was too small for the them to roost in there(about 3 weeks), they had pretty much integrated themselves to the olders. If you have too many smallers to fit in a crate you can partition off part of the coop with a wire wall and make the same openings for smallers escape.

    Best example ever of chick respite and doors by azygous

    Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
    This is good place to start reading:
  3. barnbum204

    barnbum204 In the Brooder

    Jun 27, 2015
    Ok cool thanks. I was reading the articles and they were saying unless the chickens come from a hatchery but didn't say what to do differently if they did. We are getting somenough australorps and silver laced Wyandottes. 8 in total and they are all 5 or 6 weeks old already. How long should we quatentine them and is there a different way we need to go about introducing them to ther existing hens?

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