(Q) I have four Warrens that are great fun. Eeny, Meany, Miny and Mos.
I have four Warren chickens which are great fun, they run free in an open garden.
They were point of lay in July 2011 and are now going through there first ever moult, this has reduced the amount of eggs they are producing.
I have an ever increasing demand for eggs from my neighbours and I am finding it hard to maintain the supply. I have read that introducing more chickens can be difficult into an established group. Could you please advise if I could introduce more Warrens and a couple of rare breeds for "decoration"?
The shed is capable of sixteen chickens and the garden, that was, is about fifteen metres square.
It can be difficult to introduce new birds, but if this is done carefully and correctly there should be very few problems.
The introduction must always be carried out at night, never add new birds in daylight. Wait until it is going dark or is dark then add the birds into the coop, even placing them onto the perches with the other birds.
Try to make sure they stay on the perches and leave them overnight to be let out of the coop the following morning, this tends to make the resident birds think that they have been there all the time, but there could possibly be the odd scuffle which should soon settle down as they get accustomed to each other. Always make sure the birds have enough space to be able to get away if there is too much bullying to start with.
What does concern me is that you are considering adding rare breeds as some of these are not compatible with standard hybrid layers, this of course does depend on which breed you are thinking of choosing. If you have decided which breed you would like, let me know and I may be able to advise you further.
BB’S Choice is a selection of only the best tried and tested products recommended by Terry Beebe. Terry has been involved in backyard and exhibition poultry keeping for over 20 years and writes articles for Practical Poultry, Fancy Fowl, Country Smallholder, Home Farmer magazines and many others. He has also written several informative books, so you know his advice can be trusted.