Time for the vulcan flock meld?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Jeffross1968, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. Jeffross1968

    Jeffross1968 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2011
    Smoky Mountains
    Ok...so that was a bit of a stretch....

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    But I'm considering finally putting my two flocks of laying age, and youngin's (maybe 14 or 15 weeks old) together. They've had separate sleeping arraingments for 6 weeks now. They free range together. The little ones are not so little anymore. They have spent a good deal of time investigating the big girls coop over the last couple weeks. I'm not positive of their age, it's only a guess. The guy I bought them from was definitely padding their age. Told me 12 weeks, I'm guessing they were 8-10 at the most. However, the BJG is already now the size of my brown leghorns. The BSL is close behind, and the golden comet and RIR are certainly no...well, ok, they are spring chickens. But you get my point. A couple of them are getting reddish in the face and comb, and have started to seem to fit in well with others. I think there is one trouble maker, my light brahma, who can be pretty rough on them during treat wars. But other than that, it seems to be going well.

    My concern, which is still a few weeks away, is that the little coop has no laying box. I'd like to get them integrated before they start laying, because the stress will be an issue, plus, I want them to start investigating the laying boxes when it's time.

    So what do you think? Should I pull a flock spock? Time to make the meld?
     
  2. Mommy 2 Wee Ones

    Mommy 2 Wee Ones Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 19, 2011
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    I started integrating my two set of chicks when the oldest 10 were 9 weeks old, the other set of 5 were 7 & 5 weeks old. For the first two weeks, I had a fence that separated them in the run. And at night they were in the large Rubbermaid container. Then I took a chance and let them all in the coop together at night. The smaller 5 roosted on the top shelf of the roost, the older 10 puppy piled on the floor in the corner of the coop.
    Last week, I guess the light dawned on the older 10, because now all 15 are on the shelf, no one uses the roosting rails I made for them, except as a ladder. My Roo Owl is the divider, but my younger 5 are still intimidated by the other 10, and they huddle in the corner of the roost shelf as far from the others as they can get.

    They are now 16 weeks, 14 weeks & 12 weeks old. They did better than I expected, but still will get chased by the older ones from time to time. They are low hens on the pecking order.
     
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    I think they will "assimilate" just fine into the "collective" and will live long and prosper.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2011
  4. Jeffross1968

    Jeffross1968 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2011
    Smoky Mountains
    Quote:See now, I knew SOMEONE would play along [​IMG]
     
  5. Pele

    Pele Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Boise
    We are avian. We will add your biological and eggoological distinctiveness to our own. Pecking is futile.
     
  6. Jeffross1968

    Jeffross1968 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2011
    Smoky Mountains
    Quote:Love it!

    Well, about an hour before bed, I enticed them all into the run early with some scratch, as the young ones were in there investigating. Once the last was in, I closed it up and the chaos ensued! Mostly just food related pecking and chasing. The 4 young ones did some scratching and eating, huddled in a corner and retreated to one of the roosts in the run a few times. Slowly but surely, the older ones headed up the ramp into the coop. When only the young ones were left, they got pretty antsy, especially as it began getting darker.

    But a switch went off in the heads of 3 of them, and they eventually went up the ramp and into the coop. While we waited for the 4th to do the same, there was a bit of anarchy going on in the coop, as the 3 little ones already in, were trying to find a spot on a roost. Which is really cool, because in the little coop, they ignored the roost and slept in a pile on the ground. Finally, we decided, as it was nearly pitch dark and all the last one was doing was making horrible noises and pacing like mad, I went in the run and grabbed her, and put her in the coop. 5 minutes later, it's pitch dark and everyone is on a roost. Yay!

    Contemplating whether I should keep them all locked up tomorrow or let them out to free range. With the little coop blocked off, they won't be able to retreat to it. I think what I'll do is keep them locked up until about noon. Let them identify with their new home a little bit, but then relieve some stress by letting them out. I was able to get them in today. Unless there is bloodshed tomorrow morning, it shouldn't be an issue.

    I'll chicken jail anyone who causes too much trouble. I mean....Were I to invoke logic, however, logic clearly dictates that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, right? (was really looking for a way to work that in)
     
  7. Gmsg01

    Gmsg01 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 4, 2011
    West Monroe,NY
    And so the story (hopefully) ends with "live long and prosper"
     

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