Six new chicks but have concerns.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ta2d, Oct 9, 2015.

  1. ta2d

    ta2d Out Of The Brooder

    34
    4
    26
    Aug 13, 2015
    lower michigan
    We have 12 healthy layers. Some just started laying about a week ago. They have their own pen and coop. Today we were given 6 baby chicks 1 to 2 weeks old. We have them in the first coop/run we built next to our layers. My concern is can they pass anything onto the layers or vice versa. The new chicks were not vaccinated.
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,925
    2,902
    421
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    The thing you need to most concerned about is cocci. Feeding the chicks medicated starter should cover that.

    Many of us brood chicks right in with the adult chickens with no issues. I recommend good housekeeping practices, plenty of space, and you should have no worries.
     
  3. ta2d

    ta2d Out Of The Brooder

    34
    4
    26
    Aug 13, 2015
    lower michigan
    Ok, new question. How do I introduce the new chicks to the flock? They're still very small so I don't know if the others will attack them or accept them. I currently have the Lil ones in a separate coop.
     
  4. ta2d

    ta2d Out Of The Brooder

    34
    4
    26
    Aug 13, 2015
    lower michigan
    [​IMG]
     
  5. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,925
    2,902
    421
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Many of us integrate chicks with the adults utilizing the panic room method. If you've been raising these chicks within view of the adult flock, simply open small chick-size openings in their pen so they can explore the rest of the run, but the adults can't get into their safe enclosure.

    After the chicks have learned the pecking order and how to respect the adults, then you can move them into the coop with the adults, unless you plan to let them continue to use the coop they're in, which would work splendidly.

    You can do that by waiting until the adult flock has finished roosting and then you gather up the chicks and place them in the coop. It helps to move them in with whatever they've been sleeping in to this point. It helps ease the transition.

    On the second night, you will need to get inside the coop and call the chicks in or lure them in with treats. Light the coop inside with a light so the chicks don't fear going into a darkened place. Wait until they're gathered together looking for their night sleep place, and they'll be very eager to go inside.

    After the third night, they usually go in on their own.
     
  6. Coffee 1st

    Coffee 1st Chillin' With My Peeps

    837
    398
    158
    Jul 31, 2015
    ohh way 2 cute....
     
  7. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

    12,748
    5,686
    436
    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    Ask @azygous to show you her portal system for chicks in with adults. It's brilliant, and something that I am absolutely going to incorporate in my chick pen next time!
     
  8. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,925
    2,902
    421
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    [​IMG]Oh, okay. Here's the portal system into the "panic room". My run is broken up into three partitioned areas, and there's a portal in each partition, made of quarter-inch plywood about 5 x 7", each with a hinged door that can be dropped down and closed if I need to contain the chicks. That size is good until around 12 weeks, then they're usually too big to keep fitting through, but by then, they can handle the pecking order without needing a safe pen.

    [​IMG]The chicks learn at lightening speed to navigate the portals and they zip around the pen at warp speed just inches ahead of pursuing adults, who never seem able to catch the little twerps. It's very entertaining. Chicks can be such teases. These chicks just turned three weeks at the time these photos were taken.
     
  9. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

    12,748
    5,686
    436
    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    Yep, that's the one! Love that setup! Thanks, @azygous
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2015
  10. ta2d

    ta2d Out Of The Brooder

    34
    4
    26
    Aug 13, 2015
    lower michigan
    Well, it's been a lil bit but I figured I'd give y'all an update. After a few weeks of separating the new baby silkies from the original flock, via seperate runs/coops, we finally got up the gall to merge them.
    To be on the safe side, the first thing I made was an escape pod for the chicks. Basically a plastic tub with a hole big enough for the chicks to get in but not the adults.
    I left it in their side of the pen and would close the coop during the day. Eventually they started to use it for shelter or to hide in when we came into the run.
    My theory was that the chicks now associate the pod as a safe zone, so they would use it during the merger if needed.

    Well the day finally came. We doubled up the food and water, threw in extra treats and crossed our fingers.
    I relocated the pod and Momma decided she was gonna stay in the run and supervise.
    We opened the dividing door and scootched the lil ones into the big run.
    The biggun's were so exited about the scratch feed and mealworms they barely paid attention to the chicks.
    After about an hour one of the bigger chickens, not the alpha, tried to intimidate the lil ones. Momma quickly let her know she was boss with a lil tug on the tail. Enough to get attention but not to do harm. After that all seemed well.
    Later we brought the Lil ones into the new coop, as they were trying to get into the old run and would not come inside. I brought the pod inside although it really wasn't needed. They all got along fine. Momma was worried so she spent another hour fussing with the ladies.
    Our chickens enjoy being picked up and petted, something we started from the day we raised them.
    Once they were all calm we left them and called it a night.

    We never had any issues with the merger and even though the silkies still flock together, they all get along. Recently we've learned at least one of the silkies, if not two are roo's. The one crows and struts a lil, while the other really hasn't done anything yet.
    We're keeping an eye on them and if the situation changes, we'll just have to cross that bridge when it comes.
    I'm sure we'll have plenty of good advice.
    Thank you all for your tips and knowledge.
    God Bless.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2016

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by