When to introduce chicks to chickens?

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Fifitrix

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« on: August 05, 2008, 17:57 »
Hi everyone

My chicks are now 9 weeks old and really need to be running around more than in the little run I've got them in.  Can I introduce them to the chicken pen yet?  or is it too early?  The big ones do attack them when they're introduced but I know they need to work out the pecking order and all that.

I've got two seperate homes so they don't have to sleep together  :wink: but am worried the biggies might kill the littlies.

What do you think?

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Vember

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2008, 18:07 »
Hi Fifi

My Buffs hatched on the 9th of June and they've been in with the biggies for a couple of weeks now.

But they have a Mum to look out for them don't know if that makes a diffrence??

There's been an odd squabble but no blood or owt nast like that  :lol:

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FCG

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2008, 18:54 »
How big are they in relation to the hens? I would think if they are 1/2-2/3 as big as the hens they should be able to hold them all.

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Fifitrix

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2008, 19:04 »
Hi thanks for your help.

I would say they're only 1/3 - 1/2 the size of the chickens.  It's distressing my kids watching them being beaten up and they don't have a mum to look after them ......... apart from me.  :wink:  :wink:  :wink:

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agapanthus

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2008, 19:17 »
Having a mum makes a BIG difference....she will protect them whatever. If I remember correctly our were about 11 weeks old when they were put in with the big girls. How many chickens are you putting them in with and how many chicks?

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woodburner

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2008, 19:23 »
could you put the small pen inside the big run for a few days?

Something else I've seen suggested is to partition the main run, with holes/gaps just big enough for only the chicks to get through, so that they can escape to safety. Start them off confined to the seperate area so that they know that area is safe, then after a few days open up the gaps.
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Fifitrix

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2008, 19:57 »
Quote from: "woodburner"
could you put the small pen inside the big run for a few days?

Something else I've seen suggested is to partition the main run, with holes/gaps just big enough for only the chicks to get through, so that they can escape to safety. Start them off confined to the seperate area so that they know that area is safe, then after a few days open up the gaps.


Yes I think I will put the smaller run in with the bigger one for a bit.  Not sure about the smaller holes bit as I'm not good at DIY but at least that will be a start.

I'm introducing 3 chicks to 3 chickens and maybe I was trying too soon.

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Jellyhead

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2008, 20:40 »
Thats what I did Feefs. I just put a smaller run in the big coop. My chooks must be very good cos after a few days they were all fine. I normally give it a week. The only naughty bird I have is Bertie the mallard. In fact I think he may have to go to my friend with a nice big lake cos he really is a person. He can be so aggressive but not to chooks only to ducks or geese :shock:
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Porffor

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When to introduce chicks to chickens?
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2008, 22:15 »
I had to do a quick intro of my new buffy with my older two hens. :) I chose to let them 'meet' in the big run just before bed, then put Buffy into the henhouse when the other two had settled, they had a couple of words literally - you know the chatter, but that was it, she's fully accepted now and glad to say they get on brilliantly.

I know chicks are different, and I'm sure i'll have this all to come in around 9 weeks or so! ;)

Really hope it works out for you. If yours are anything like mine though they'll have been watching each other already from one run to the other.. i noticed both sets of chooks responding to each other today and when one got excited (at me putting in food) the other did too! lol



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