Should I add another silkie?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by robyn8, Aug 19, 2016.

  1. robyn8

    robyn8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 4 BO pullets, 1 cockerel, and a silkie pullet (she's supposed to be a pullet but I know its probably too soon to tell for sure) all almost 6 weeks old. I had a second silkie pullet, but she died at 10 days old. I've been contemplating adding another silkie or 2 because I feel bad for the lone silkie. She seems fine with the other birds and there doesn't appear to be a problem with bullying or anything yet. But the big birds are starting to roost and can fly up to the roosts easily and she can't. I feel bad for her. I've tried contacting some local breeders to see if I could add a couple more about the same age but I'm not having any luck getting responses.

    Should I consider adding an older silkie? There are some available on craigslist (mostly roosters though). There are also some straight run chicks that might be still available on there, but I worry about ending up with a second rooster and I really want to keep my BO rooster so I can hatch out more BOs in the future.

    If I waited till spring to add more silkies, would they just stay in their own little group anyways and not hang out with my current silkie?

    This is my first time with chicks and they seem really content so I should probably just leave it alone, but the tiny little silkie makes me feel bad that she has no one else her size to hang out with.
     
  2. Dmontgomery

    Dmontgomery Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    Yes, try to add another one. The answer is always yes when someone is thinking of adding chickens. If you have the room, get more.
    But seriously, try to add intermediate landings that she can jump up to until she can reach the higher roosting area. My limited experience has been that my chickens group together by age, but they are brooder mates so that is their closest friend.
     
  3. robyn8

    robyn8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do have la branch resting from the ground to the roost for her to walk up but she doesn't so far. I'll try adding something else.

    So do you think it would be best to add a similar aged silkie? Or would hatching a couple be ok if I can't find a 6 weekish old one? What if I hatched a roo? Is there a chance my BO roo would be ok with him?
     
  4. Dmontgomery

    Dmontgomery Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    From your initial post, the only problem seems to be that you are worried about her roosting habits. If you find a way to solve that, it not matter if you get another Silkie or not. I don't think the chickens care what breed the other coop members are as long as they are raised together. Someone else on the forums pointed out "chickens are not racist". They don't care about breeds as much as we do. If you add a Silkie chick, try to get one the same age.

    There's no way to tell how your BO rooster is going to interact with another male, until it happens. I've had roosters that didn't care whether there was another male in the coop and I've had roosters fight to the death while free ranging. Right now I have 3 roosters in a flock of 40. Elvis (EE) is only 2 weeks older than George (RSL) but he is the boss. Each has his own "harem" that follow him around. Then Rufus (GC) is another 4 weeks younger. He only hangs out with his sisters and the quinea hen that moved in recently. None of the roosters seem to care about each other, right now. There is no fussing or fighting in or out of the coop/run. I hope I didn't just jinx myself.
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I would hold off.

    You don't know for sure your Silkie is a female, and there's no guarantee the other silkie would be female, either. You could easily wind up with two silkie roosters.

    My Silkies do indeed roost with the other birds. It just takes them longer to figure things out. At 6 weeks, a lot of my birds aren't roosting yet anyway. I've got 3 month Faverolles still sleeping on the ground.

    I know it can be distressing for humans to watch animal social structure sometimes, but I can say with confidence it bothers the humans way more than the animals. You're thinking "It's so lonely, it's sleeping all by itself and everyone else is going off and leaving it and it has to be by itself". The chick is thinking "Bedtime. I'm going to bunk down right here".

    If, when the birds are say 6ish months and you're confident it's a pullet and a keeper, and you still feel there's a social gap, you can look for another silkie hen to join the group. But I'm thinking at that time, everyone will be just fine together.
     
  6. robyn8

    robyn8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for all the comments! Yes I agree it probably bothers me more than the birds. I wasn't so much worried about breed difference but more the size difference. The BOs are like 4 times as big as my little silkie! But she seems to hold own just fine and doesn't get picked on. I should probably just leave it be for now.
     

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