Wednesday, September 8, 2010

New Addition




Not content to add only to our human flock (8 weeks until lift off!!!), Hubs and I added 3 ladies to our feathered line-up yesterday. The hens have been lovingly tended to since teensy chicks by my friend Kristina and her husband Ian. We've been intending on increasing our flock for some time, as our girl's egg output doesn't quite match up to our egg consumption (we're heavy egg consumers chez English). Additionally, our ladies are molting, and they're 2 1/2 years old, both of which contribute to a reduction in egg output.

We've got them sequestered in our chicken tractor for now. Introducing new flock mates to an existing flock can get a little hairy (or would that be "feathery"?). It's best to keep them within sight of each other but out of direct reach for a few days. Hopefully, if all goes well, they'll get along like champs once they're in each others direct physical space. Georgette, our Barred Plymouth Rock, was ruffling her feathers earlier this evening at one of the newbies, making her neck plumage very much resemble an Elizabethan collar. Perhaps she was just strutting her stuff, perhaps she was ticked that the new crew was given raisins in their tractor that she couldn't reach (she's seriously bananas for raisins). Either way, I've got my eye on her.

I'll keep you posted on how the grand unification scheme pans out. 'Til then, fingers, toes, and claws crossed!

7 comments:

Cathy said...

Those girls have led charmed lives. First with Kristina and Ian who lavished them with love and great care and now you Little Mama. It's no wonder your girls might be a little jealous. Bravo! Bravo! for everyone.

Anna said...

This doesn't seem like a logistically very easy thing to do, but I've heard that putting new chickens in with the old at night when they are asleep works well. Apparently when they wake up, chickens don't notice that the new ones weren't there before.

Rachel said...

Yay more chickens! Aariel and Cliff's seven produce a good amount of eggs. They lost one recently to a raccoon and it was interesting to see the dynamic change; the sister to the victim became the lowest on the pecking pole. Hopefully they'll ease up on her soon. Its good to remember that a little separation-immersion goes along way.

Rachel said...

Yay more chickens! Aariel and Cliff's seven produce a good amount of eggs. They lost one recently to a raccoon and it was interesting to see the dynamic change; the sister to the victim became the lowest on the pecking pole. Hopefully they'll ease up on her soon. Its good to remember that a little separation-immersion goes along way.

ashley english said...

Anna-That's definitely one method I'm aware of. That's actually part of the larger plan, but only after several days worth of limited physical contact yet full-on visible exposure. Then, either tomorrow night or the next, we'll shut them all into the hen house together and hope for the best!!!

Oz Girl said...

I'll be doing my first integration come late October, when I inherit my stepdaughter's flock of chickens... they will need to be integrated with the guinea keets I just got last week. :-) T'will be interesting I'm sure! Hmmm, never heard of that night-time trick.

Amanda said...

Aww, sweet little chickens! Have you named them? I hope they all get along, and are one big, happy hen family soon!