When will my 2 new hens leave the coop?? Do I intervene?


10 Years
May 9, 2009
Black Forest, CO
We bought 2 new hens that are going on 16 weeks.. for 2 weeks now they have been living with the original 6 chickens (22 weeks.. OT .. still waiting for our first egg
).(We had them seperated for a week to get to know each other before moving them in the coop/run. When all 8 of them are in the coop they all seem to do fine.. All 8 of them will roost together.. The two new hens (Lucy(red star) and Ethel (black star)) will always be next to each other on the roost.. but still all 8 of them are together and fine.

Problem is come morning when my first 6 leave the coop to go and be outside in the run the two new hens won't leave the coop at all! I have forced them out by putting them in the run and shutting the coop door.. but they'll cluck and run around then pile up at the coop door begging to go back in the coop! Ugggh! When they are in the coop and on the coop floor getting food and water.. one of my other hens will come in the coop and Lucy and Ethel instantly jump up on a roost to get away from the hens.. I am finding that my 2 lowest in the pecking order hens seem to be the biggest bullies to the new hens.

So do I just let them do their own thing.. figuring one day they'll come out ? or do I intervene and put them out in the run, shut the coop door and force them to be outside and mingle with my other 6??

what to do?? I would "think" they'd work it out on their own and Lucy and Ethel will be coming outside to scratch around on their own? But maybe they need more of a push??? what to do.. what to do???
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In the Brooder
10 Years
May 9, 2009
Holland/Spring Hill/St Louis
I don't see a problem with hanging out in the coop. Eventually, they'll want to go outside ... especially if food, water or treats are offered.

It sounds like when you forced them out, they got stressed. Go with your gut instinct ... keep them calm even if it means they want to hang in the coop. What's the harm?

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