will a 16 week old hen attack chicks?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by emmadamage, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. emmadamage

    emmadamage Out Of The Brooder

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    ok so i have 2 cream crested legabrs, a hen and a cockeral..long story short i knew they were an autosexing breed, what i didnt know it was the colour that determined the sex...silly me should have looked it up! so i got palmed off a cockeral by the breeder. as i live in a residential area i have rehomed then to a friend that has a small holding (will be going in a couple days), but as they are my pets i was toying with the idea of keeping the hen. so the questions are, my hen and cockeral are 16 weeks old, and have been together since birth, i have mollycoddled them and they are very tame, but also are fine free range so not worried about them fitting in on the farm, but would it cause issues if they were seperated? they seem to miss each other an awful lot if they get seperated at home, i.e i take one to its coop before the other...are they attached or is it just because i only have 2? next question, because the hen is only young herself, would she be nasty if i got another 2 chicks (hens)? i was going to keep the chicks in a rabbit cage in the garage with a heat lamp until they are old enough to be without, would she be lonely as she wont be able to interact with them until off heat or will she be ok because she can see them? i dont know what to do for the best i love my chickens but dont know if its kinder to let her go than keep her, i certainly dont want her stressed for personal gain. any help would be appreiciated x
     
  2. emmadamage

    emmadamage Out Of The Brooder

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    May 22, 2014
    Help?
     
  3. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    You will need to allow the new birds to grow to a size where they can hold their own because, yes, there will be some "initiation" that goes on when you first introduce the birds. Perhaps it would be easier to just start over with the new chicks and let the two you have now go on together since you have already made arrangements for them.
     
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  4. islandgirl82

    islandgirl82 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She may or may not go after them. It would depend on the pullet herself...mood, disposition, etc. You can certainly make the introductions but I recommend starting in a controlled environment and not just putting them all in together and see what happens. There will likely be chasing, nipping, possibly feathers flying when intros are made but as long as your there to supervise in the beginning, eventually they'll get over it.

    As for your roo...there are threads on here about how to keep them quiet if it's about noise ordinance in your area (when mine is old enough I'll be trying the collar method) but having just one hen for him isn't enough for him and likely to be too much for her. There are varying opinions on the best ratio but I think again, it depends on the roo's disposition. I've had two roos in the past and only had either of them with 2-3 hens. My first roo was a love. Very sweet and respectful of everyone (including humans). Three was plenty for him. He was certainly old enough to mate but I only saw him try once, the hen said no way and I never saw him go for it again, not even with the other two hens which was fine with me because I wasn't interested in adding chicks to my flock at that time. It was a devastating day when a fox took off with him.

    My second roo was slightly different. He wasn't mean to the two hens (or humans) but he definitely needed more ladies. One refused to mate with him and he accepted that but was too much for the hen who would accept his advances.

    I now have a 6 females to one male ratio. He's only about 10 weeks but considering I free-range, I'll think he'll be busy keeping them all together.

    Best of luck to you!
     
  5. emmadamage

    emmadamage Out Of The Brooder

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    Yepp never intended to get him.when I realised I had a cockeral intended to get a couple more girl for him but think I need to be sensible. I only wanted hens, he is very noisy he crows every ten to fifteen minutes a couple of times with the odd half an hour gap..where they are going they have no roosters just 6 hens of a similar age..I know they will be happier there I just got too attached to them. Even named them! Love them to pieces and they are so good but think starting over would be best. Shall put a couple of pics up of them so yoh can have a nos[​IMG]e :)
     
  6. emmadamage

    emmadamage Out Of The Brooder

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    May 22, 2014
    [​IMG]
     
  7. emmadamage

    emmadamage Out Of The Brooder

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    May 22, 2014
    Will have a look on here's for the bit you mention about helping to quiet them down.. Thank you x
     
  8. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    I think that is IS a good idea to send both, and start over with the chicks. It would be better for your pair to be introduced into a new flock to have a buddy to go with. It is very, very hard to introduce a single bird to a flock. All the rest of the flock will know that he or she is a stranger, and will give him or her a peck. If birds are of equal size, they generally give as good as they get, and pecking order will be established. If there is a pair of them, they have a friend, which in turn seems to get the flock to accept them better, as in "hmmmm that bird likes her, must not be too bad" where as a single bird can really get ostracized.

    I would STRONGLY recommend not putting chicks in with a 16 week old hen. She more than likely will kill them even if she is calm and nice to you. Those are chicken rules, and chickens do not like any bird that is strange to them. Any bird that is smaller than them will take daily violent beatings and peckings, often times being quickly pecked to death.

    I think you would do better to start over.

    Mrs K
     
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  9. emmadamage

    emmadamage Out Of The Brooder

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    Have decided to let them both go together as spent an hour making a Velcro collar and he hated it never seen an animal behave so strange! Now he's crowing twice as much and twice as loud and in a right mood :( thanks for the help guys x
     

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