When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?

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wardy

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Morning everyone. I have managed to successfully incubate and hatch six out of six eggs. They are now six weeks old and i have put them in their own coop and run in with the older girls so hopefully they will get used to each other, can anyone tell me how old they should be when they join the others ( three).Also the youngster will be on growers pellets and the others on layers.will it do the young ones any horm if they eat the layers pellets too young?. Any advise welcomed :unsure:

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Sassy

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2014, 14:57 »
If memory serves me right, I stand to be corrected, there may be too much calcium in it which may affect bone development. :)
Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted!!

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hen addict

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2014, 16:39 »
Introducing any new birds can be a nightmare. Personally I think that no hens should be introduced before they are in full lay and mature enough to handel the inevitable stress.
Mixing very young birds with older ones is heading for disaster in a confined run. Hens can be brutally bullied to the point of blood being drawn and sometimes even death. I won't even contemplate it till the pullets are at least 22 wks old and in lay. Sorry if this sounds hard but young birds just can't cope with the stress and can fall victim to illnesses as well
A chicken mad addict currently owned by 12 lovely hybrid hens, 1 large allotment growing lots of  fruit and veg

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bantam novice

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2014, 22:34 »
Congratulations on your successful hatching.   :D

I would agree with Hen Addict here.  The pullets need to be at least roughly the same size before being introduced.

 The other issue is with feed.  The young ones need to be on growers pellets until they are about point of lay and then introduced gradually to layers pellets.  The high calcium in layers pellets can cause kidney problems for hens that start eating them too young.

A third point is to consider what you are going to do about the young cockerels.  With the usual proportion of hatching being 70% cockerels to 30% hens you are likely to have more than one cockerel among your young chicks.  This is going to cause trouble when they are adults as they will fight - particularly in the spring time.

Good luck and how about some pictures!
11 bantams (and counting!) 2 dogs 1 cat

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JaK

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2014, 09:12 »
I put the youngsters in with the others once they reach 18 weeks old. That way they are old enough to eat the same feed and strong enough to get out of the way of any trouble the older birds may want to give them.

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tosca100

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2014, 11:50 »
I suppose it depends on your set up. As we have loads of space our's start to go out into their own run inside the layer's huge space at about four weeks if the weather is good, six weeks if it's cool. Then the access hole is opened wide enough for the chicks to go in and out as they see fit. They have a good feed in the morning and evening and crumbs in the mini run. The layer's food is suspended and they can't reach the feeders. We have been hatching for two years now and have never had an injured chick. After the initial interest the hens just take passing swipes and the chicks head for the bolt hole if they are feeling threatened. Most are reserved before they reach full size, but the misfits which end up with my girls decide when they feel comfortable enough to go to bed the big girls but can use the nursery as long as they want.

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joyfull

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2014, 12:58 »
I have always used broody hens and after their morning feed they have followed their mums around intermingling with the others. The broodies usually take them into the main coop at around 6 weeks but I do have to watch they get their own feed and stop the big girls eating it.
Staffies are softer than you think.

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wardy

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2014, 19:23 »
Hi, we have decided to partition the run so the girls can get used to the youngsters and when the right time comes let them free to mingle together, i will put some pictures of them later,hope you like them.
Thankyou for all of your replies  :) :) :) :)

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barley

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2014, 21:59 »
Hi, we have decided to partition the run so the girls can get used to the youngsters and when the right time comes let them free to mingle together, i will put some pictures of them later,hope you like them.
Thankyou for all of your replies  :) :) :) :)

was just going to suggest this method - we had 4 six week old chicks once and partitioned them off and at night I put some mesh across one of the nest boxes  and popped them in there , this way the older birds could  see the youngsters  but not able to bully or fight

can't wait to see your pics   :D

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Sassy

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2014, 12:37 »
Hi, we have decided to partition the run so the girls can get used to the youngsters and when the right time comes let them free to mingle together, i will put some pictures of them later,hope you like them.
Thankyou for all of your replies  :) :) :) :)

This has worked for me and is the kindest way to do it for all concerned. :)

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wardy

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2014, 19:56 »
Hi,

This is number 4 that hatched whilst we popped out shopping! <3

: )
photo4.jpg

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wardy

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2014, 19:58 »
These are the chicks at 1 day old  :)
photo1.jpg
photo3.jpg
photo5.jpg

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joyfull

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2014, 20:01 »
very cute, fingers crossed for females  :)

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wardy

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2014, 20:07 »
Hi,
Does anybody know how to put more pictures up as it is saying that I have gone over the limit?
I have more pictures to post, thanks.

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joyfull

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Re: When to introduce young chickens to older chickens?
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2014, 20:39 »
Wardy, try starting a new topic in chicken chat to see if you can post there - we do try to keep this hen house for problems and your new chicks are far from a problem, they are simply gorgeous  :)



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