Will flock ever accept new chickens?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chicknduck, Oct 2, 2010.

  1. chicknduck

    chicknduck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 21, 2010
    Ohio
    I have 11 golden comets that are 26 weeks old and 2 barred rocks and a spekled sussex that are 11 weeks old. The little ones have their own sleeping place in the coop away from the others and a sectioned off run but every time I try to have them together for just a minute the big ones beat up on the small ones. I have heard to keep them seperate untill the little ones are 14 weeks old. Will it be any easier when the little ones are 14 weeks? I am new to this and would like any advise on the matter that I could get. They have had theese living arangements for 5 weeks now are they ever gonna get along? We did have 2 sussex but it got out of thesmall run and the big ones literally peaked it to death and then ate it. [​IMG]
     
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    You're already off to a good start by having them be able to see each other. It's not so much the age at integration, but the size. The young ones should be roughly the same size as the older ones. Then you have to bite the bullet and put them together at night. There will be chasing, pecking, bullying - this is how they figure out their place. Do NOT intervene unless there is blood. The first time is very difficult. But each time you integrate, it gets easier. It's like the hens remember. My 4th integration, there was only chasing for 2 days, not the 2 weeks of the first time.
     
  3. drdoolittle

    drdoolittle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2010
    NE Indiana
    The very best way to blend 2 flocks, is to put them together in a pen that neither flock can consider their territory. It's also best to do this after dark when they are roosting---some people say they wake up in the morning and don't realise anything is different. There may still be some scuffles as the pecking order is determined, but I don't think anyone will get killed-----just keep an eye on them the first day they're all together.
     
  4. ThePamperedPullet

    ThePamperedPullet Chillin' With My Peeps

    we use transition pens for all our new birds. This is a pen seperated from the main pen by means of chicken wire. It gives them all a chance to get to know each other but not get at each other. they remain in the transition pen for up to 2 weeks or until the novelty of the new birds wears off. we integrate chicks as young as 3 weeks into our main flock with little or no trouble. Our main flock consists of about 60 birds ranging in age from 3 years down to 3 weeks and also has up to 14 roosters at any one time. It works very well.
     
  5. chicknduck

    chicknduck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 21, 2010
    Ohio
    Great advice thanks so much. The little ones should be the same size in a few weeks They are getting their big girl voices and some red to their wattles and combs. Once they are the same size I guess I will just go for it. I just want to make sure I am doing it the right way. I love this board it is amazing what I have learned and how much everyone is willing to help. Thanks again
     

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