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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 10:33 am 
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Dapper Duck
Dapper Duck

Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 7:45 pm
Posts: 51
Hi

I have seven ISA Brown chicks that are 16 days old. I am wanting to get 6 more Leghorn/New Hampshire crossed chicks that are just 1 day olds. Do you all think that I can safely put the day olds in with the 16 day olds and not have issues with the older chicks trying to beat up the younger chicks?

I'd really appreciate everyone's thoughts on this as soon as possible because the day olds are hatching in two days time so I have to decide by tomorrow so that I can order them for the next day. If I don't buy these particular day olds then I will end up with none.

Thanks

Anne


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 11:20 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:15 pm
Posts: 6368
Location: ACT area
No I wouldn't.
At that age the differences are too great. By the time the others hatch the ISA will be almost 3 weeks old.
I would set up a separate brooder and intergrate them in a few weeks - maybe when the newbies are fully feathered and somewhere which is new territory to the older ones - maybe on the grass so they are busy exploring and being distracted. The ISA shouldn't be fully fledged bullies until POL.
In the meantime and once the younger ones are settled you may be able to introduce the older ones one at a time - definitely not as a gang.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:20 am 
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Proud Rooster
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Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 6:00 pm
Posts: 330
There does seem to be an age point where chickens switch from easy-going and accepting to hierarchical and aggressive. I have found that chickens from successive hatches can be integrated provided that their different management needs are catered for. It probably depends on your rearing system and how closely they are monitored in the initial stages.
As Sue says, it is not ideal and it is always necessary to allow integrated birds an opportunity to escape from persecution if there is aggression.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:59 pm 
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Dapper Duck
Dapper Duck

Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 7:45 pm
Posts: 51
Thanks for the replies.

I'm happy to say that it went brilliantly. No problems at all.

I put all the older chicks (16 days old) behind a wire barricade so that they could see the younger chicks (1 day old) but not get to them. I let the younger chicks run around and drink and eat. The older chicks hadn't had their breakfast yet as I wanted them keen on eating food and not on killing babies. One of the older chicks was desperately trying to get past the wire and I wasn't sure if she just wanted to get to the food or to attack the younger chicks. I had the younger chicks in a 1 metre long space so that I could easily catch any bullies. I just let in the desperate looking older chick by herself and none of the others so that it was 1 against 8. She ran straight over and immediately began eating the food. She paid absolutely no attention to the younger chicks. So I let the other older chicks in, one at a time, and none of them had any interest in the younger chicks, only in eating food. I stayed with them for about two hours and they were just fine and have been ever since.

I read somewhere that the instinct to bully other birds from outside your flock doesn't really kick in until around 6 weeks. Don't know how reliable that is but for my chicks it all went beautifully.


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