How to Introduce Young Birds into Your FlockJul 11, 2023
How do you add young chickens into your existing flock?
This question is brought up quite often to me in my inbox.
1-The first thing you want to think about when you are adding young chickens into your existing flock is whether or not they eat the same food.
If they are still on Starter, it’s going to be difficult to add them into your flock of layers because they will not be able to stay on the proper feed. The other problem you’ll run into is if you also have a dish of starter the layers will start eating that and it may cause problems with them laying eggs for you because of the high protein.
2- The second thing that you want to make sure of is that they are fairly close to the same size as your birds that you want to introduce them to.
If you have birds that are significantly smaller they will not be able to stick up for themselves because there is always a pecking order in the beginning and you need to let them work out their differences which would be hard to do if they are not close to the same size.
3- The third thing that we make sure of when we introduce birds into the coop with the others, is that they go in groups never one at a time.
If you put them in groups then they tend to just stay in their group until they get used to each other. We find this works really well so that they are not getting picked on.
4-The last thing that we sometimes do or will do if we feel there may be trouble introducing the birds is to put them in the coop at night.
If you do this it is not as much of a surprise to the other birds because in the morning the other birds are already there. The only thing is you want to get up early that morning just to make sure that you can see that none of them are getting picked on.
5-we also have a pen beside the other birds so that they can see each other through the fence.
You can also put a barrier in between them to divide the coop for a short time usually just a few days so they can get adjusted to seeing each other so it is not a surprise.
6-The other thing you may want to consider is the breeds that you have may affect how well they get along.
All breeds personalities can differ and some breeds just don’t get along.
As you can see, there are several things that you can do when you are introducing new birds to your flock. There’s never a full proof way and none of these suggestions are ever guaranteed. Trial and error is usually always the best way.
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