When will be the best time to integrate my newbies?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Teacherpea, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. Teacherpea

    Teacherpea Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 20, 2013
    I have five hens that are six months old and three new girls that are two weeks old tomorrow (Monday, 10/14). When will be the best time to integrate them? Advice on how? I have a coop with an attached run, and I let the girls hang outside of the run in the afternoons and on the weekends...
     
  2. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    Jul 24, 2013
    In my experience, a good age to integrate young birds to older birds is when the young birds are 12+ weeks of age. By that time, they are fully feathered, are active and boisterous, and are learning how to fend for themselves. If the birds that are being introduced are way smaller (less than 1/3-1/2 the size), then I would wait longer to introduce them, though.

    I usually just put the young and old birds together and let them sort things out. There will be fighting, but once the older hens have asserted their dominance, the young birds learn to stay out of their way. If you're worried about the young ones being hurt, though, you can separate them in a separate, temporary (or not) pen so that they can see the adults but not come into contact with them. Then after a week or two of this, combine the two age groups.
     

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