Caring for your chickens is relatively simple once your hens are established. However, there will come a time when you need to add new chickens to your collection, whether you’re growing or replacing members of your brood. Before you add to your flock, check out these suggestions from your chicken experts at Coastal.
Adding a new member to your flock takes a bit more than just plopping them into the coop. You need to take your time. If you’re introducing a young chicken, be sure to segregate them in a small pin inside the area with the other chickens. This will allow them to see one another, but not physically interact. Once they’ve been accepted, you can put them in with the others.
Size Them Up
Try to introduce chickens that are the same size, or will grow to be about the same size, as your current flock. This can help alleviate pecking and bullying.
Alone or in Pairs
Some experts say it’s best to introduce new chickens in pairs. This tactic works best when the chickens you’re introducing to the flock already know one other.
Wait Until Nightfall
Chickens are typically quiet and calm at night, which makes it the perfect time to introduce a new member. This is also a great way to allow your new bird to wander the coop and get used to their new environment.
New Coop and New Members
If you’re planning on building or buying a new chicken coop, wait to add your new chickens until that time. Then, both your current chickens and the new brood will both be in unfamiliar territory.
Pecking Orders are Natural
If you don’t have a rooster, then one of your chickens will likely assume the role as the dominant bird. Check out our article Should You Get a Rooster for more information on roosters and happy chickens. You don’t want your chickens to harm one another, but some dominant pecking and bullying are normal to determine a new pecking order.
We Have Your Chicken Supplies
You’ll find everything you need for your chickens at your Northwest owned and operated Coastal. That includes waterers, bedding, heat lamps, feed, and supplies. Have a question about your chickens? Ask one of our experts and go home with the answers you need.