Our chickens have made a successful transition into the coop and out to the yard without the hens beating them up, nothing more than a peck here and there. It's pretty funny, the little chicks know to keep out of range so as soon as a hen comes near they run, skip and hop as fast as they can. A couple of times they simply ran between the legs of the hen, popping that old hen right up in the air! Boy, are those hens surprised.
They had been separated inside the coop for several weeks, cutting it in half, even the roosts. So they sat and ate next to each other which definitely helped the transition. Occasionally one would escape but we noticed that none of the others bothered it.
The first day we let them out in the yard they didn't know what to do. Wow, a big, open world. They would try to fly up to me so I would hold them. (Awwwww moment).
I put some sticks in the corner of their yard, bracing them between the wire to make an escape roost. Then I had to teach them to use it.
Hey, this works out great! Safe!
Aw, girls! Really. Not such a pretty picture is it?
The older rooster is keeping things in order, even protecting the little buff rooster. Maybe he doesn't realize the boy is competition yet. He thinks I am though. He is very aggressive with me now but the little chicks still want me to hold them. He even pecks the chicks when they try to get to me. I told the rooster that we would need to settle this NOW. Then I sang part of "She'll Be Coming Round the Mountain". You know, the part
We will kill the old red rooster when she comes . . . and
We'll all have chicken and dumplings when she comes
Last night Tom trapped the rooster in the coop while I played with the girls who promptly discovered my shoe laces (white worms?) and began to pull and tug until they came untied.
Linking to Farmgirl Friday