Chicks introduced to the Flock

Hi Everyone, today I introduced my new pullets to the rest of the flock. A pullet is the correct name for a hen chicken that has not yet laid an egg. I had eight baby chicks hatched on August 1st and I’ve been keeping them in a 10 square foot brooder box since then. Well, since they have been isolated and there’s been no health problems with either the pullets or the main flock, I felt safe to begin the blending the two groups. This is bit a ritual around Clawfoot Farm, because the whole process takes about two weeks. I literally build a small wire pen inside my hen house and the chickens can “meet and greet” for a reasonable period of time. Pretty much everyone accepts a pecking order in a chicken flock, but if you just bring home new chickens (of any age) they are going to fight and chase and get pretty rough. If you isolate the two groups, but allow visual contact and chatter, the process will go much smoother on the day the wire comes down. Keeping them separate for at least a week before the “meet and greet”, also prevents transfer of potential disease.

The other key is space! Young chickens are much faster and really don’t want the confrontation so they’ll run away and stay away once they realize they’re being targeted. Since there are eight new ones and 15 in my established flock, the problems should be minimal. I’ve been doing this a lot of years, but I’ll keep you posted if things go crazy…. If you’ve got questions, just submit below.

Oh I forgot to tell you, I put the 30 pound rolled roofing paper on the sheep pen finally. I still have not screwed down the lengths of metal roofing that will finish the job but at least the wood sheeting is protected from the weather. So anyway, I’ll add that information to my Projects Page in the next few days. Now, it can rain and everyone will be dry, at least if they choose to be.

From Uncle Bill

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