Trading chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by catchthewind, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. catchthewind

    catchthewind Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 27, 2011
    Vancouver Island
    Just wondering if it's possible to "trade" chickens. I'm not sure how chickens identify each other. For instance, we ended up with two Belgian D'Uccle roosters, but a good friend of mine has some D'Uccle hens and said I can have one. I know her well and have visited her farm many times, so would be quite comfortable introducing a hen from her right into my flock as far as disease goes (I've been to visit before I knew much about good biosecurity, so I'm sure my chickens have been in contact with germs from her farm already!), but can I just take out one of the roosters and switch in a hen or will I have problems with the new one getting picked on? I'm also wanting to trade one of my Silkie roosters for a Silkie rooster of a different colour (or at the very least, different parents, since mine are all full siblings), but again, will I have issues with that? I have a few larger roosters, but pretty soon we're hoping to be down to one large rooster and I'd love to have one bantam rooster. The ones in the flock already all get along fine, but I have a feeling I may have trouble introducing new ones? Our birds are about 15-26 weeks right now. If I waited until next spring and had a hen raise a few chicks, will they have an easier time integrating into a new flock then?
  2. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

    Jan 1, 2008
    Chickens do know each other. I read that they can identify around (70-200) (not real sure what number that is but lies between these] members of their own flock. They develope friendships and alliances and of course pecking orders. So yes it would be a transition. Make it as stress free as possible. Possibly seperating the new chickens for a while but close enough so they can see the other chickens. And give them plenty of room when they are introduced so they have places to hide untill they become comfortable with each other.

    ETA You never know when you bring new chickens into your flock even if you think they have been exposed. Different chickens can have different immunities to diseases so there is always a chance of introducing something. And the best biosecurity methods in the world can sometimes not help either.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011

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