Thursday, August 23
Holding Their Own
The six new chickens have successfully been introduced the the main flock and I am happy to report that everyone is still alive and kicking.
I was worried about the introductions since the new girls were still a bit smaller than the other ladies. But the new girls were starting the lay small brown eggs in the tractor so it was time to move to the coop.
Roy and I set all six of them into the main coop after dark one night, crossed our fingers and went to bed. I left a window open knowing that if there was any sort of incident, the noise would make its way to me. I hoped that I would not hear a peep. Separating fighting chickens at 3am was not on my to-do list.
The next morning I went out to see what damage may have been done. I know my ladies and they can get pretty rough. Looking at my flock, you can definitely see who is near the bottom of the pecking order. But everyone seemed fine and I let them out into the early morning sunshine.
Over the next few days I observed the new girls. They were mingling with the flock but still kept to themselves, much as new chickens have done here before during the introduction period. They are a little smaller, but they seem to be holding their own.
In hind sight, I should not have been so worried. When they were still in the tractor and penned yard area they would charge my ankles after I turned my back to them. These little girls have an aggressive streak which I think is helping them find their place in the flock.
They are still having to wait their turn for kitchen scraps however. If I throw a stale piece of bread into the run the older girls seem to get right of first refusal, even if the new girls get to it first. If the new girls come running to a newly thrown treat, they may get a small beak-full of bread, but they are quickly chased off by the big girls. The young ones don't fight back over the treat and if this is all the confrontation I am going to have out of the situation, I will take it happily.