How can I introduce a new rooster to the flock? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Hello! A friend wants to give me a sumatra rooster, which I would love to there any way to introduce him to my existing flock of about 40 (4 roosters) without him being killed by my current roosters? Has anyone been successful doing this? Thanks!

-- Jennifer (, August 24, 2001


I don't know your exact setup, but here's how we do it here: We have a small separate chicken run along the fence of our big pen. It has a small coop at one end - nothing elaborate, just big enough for about 3 chickens to get inside, and a bar to roost on. I would put the new rooster in there - he would be separated by the fence, but they would all be able to see each other. For the first few days, there would probably be some fights through the fence, but they will eventually get used to seeing each other. Then, I would pick 2 or 3 mild-tempered hens, and try putting them in with the new rooster. If all goes well, leave them together for a week or 2. The next step, if you free-range your chickens, would be start letting the newcomer go out to range around, first just him & "his" hens, so he learns the lay of the land a little bit, then eventually let him out after you have let the whole flock out. I find that when they are all loose together, there might be a few "scraps", but they usually don't last too long if everybody has plenty of space to retreat to. Just keep an eye on things the first day, you can always break up any fight that looks too serious. Once they can all free-range in the same area without fighting, you can just start herding him in at night with the rest of the flock. Good luck - hope it all goes OK.

-- Becky (, August 24, 2001.

you might try taking the 4 roosters out and put them in a seperate pen for a few days while the new rooster gets aquainted with the gals. I don't know if this will work but it was going to be my plan when I introduce my new spring chick/roosters. What I ended up doing was start letting my new flock range in the evenings along with the older flock to see what happens. Nothing happened for a few days so I started training the new flock to sleep with the older flock. If I keep them locked up together too long in the morning than the older roosters will start bulling the younger rooster. So I try to let them out as early as I can.

-- Russell Hays (, August 24, 2001.

McMurray Hatchery and Cackle Hatchery answered a similar question when I phoned them the other day. They say it doesn't matter how you do it, whether you just introduce him to the hen house or let them look through the fence at each other for a week, eventually you have to just let them reestablish the pecking order. I had eleven roosters that had been segregated from the other 100 chickens because of cannabalism, and when I didn't have space to separate them any longer, I just had to put them in with the rest and let them work it out for themselves. There will be a few scrapes and scuffles, but once that is over peace will reign... They did say at the hatchery that you need to make sure that the new chicken is about the same size and weight as the rest of the chickens in the flock. If he's smaller than the others, it's harder for him to adjust in. They may flog him to death or he may be so demoralized he'll just kind of slump around acting all dejected. If you have any doubts about his acceptance, you might want to consider keeping him in a separate pen.

-- Claudia Glass (, August 25, 2001.

How about having a party with name tags ;-)

-- Mary R. (, August 25, 2001.

put baby powder on all your birds including the new one. They will get along fine .

-- tony hobert (, August 25, 2001.

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