The strangest thing happened yesterday afternoon. We’d just got home from that delicious waffle, and we got a knock.

“Do you want a pair of chickens?”

Some neighbours had heard that we kept chickens and wanted to offload some of theirs. Now, we have three chickens in a ten-bird coop, so we said “no problem”.

It turns out they are pure-bred, full-size chickens, the neighbours keep mostly bantams, and these birds were bullying the bantams. That’s not a problem for us, because our chickens are all full-size birds.

Until we met these two. Even though our chickens are regular chickens, these two are about twice their size!

First impressions: our three are incredibly tame, but these two keep themselves to themselves. Today is their first full day here and the two sets of birds will generally be found at opposite ends of the garden. But that’s not a problem, until there is contention over something like food. Then, the bullying behaviour starts and these new girls will peck our girls out of the way. But, early days. I said the same about our three when they first arrived, too.

So, now we have five!


  1. One of the easiest and fastest ways of changing the dynamic of the bullies is to put a temp pen around them when the other chooks have the run of the yard. Size of browsing field trumps size of bird, generally, and they should outgrow their standover tactics that worked with the bantams quickish, or miss out on the goodies on the other side of the fence.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yup, that all sounds reasonable. Plus I’m aware that when our three first arrived, there was some pecking too, as presumably they’d never really met each other before. That stopped as they became more relaxed, now they are like the Three Musketeers. So I’m hoping that will happen with the new girls, too.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m hoping it’ll stop as they relax. But we kinda expected our three to be up tight at first, given that they came to us straight from a commercial environment, and I’m kinda surprised that the new girls are so tetchy given they have been in a domestic environment. But I suppose any animal will be nervous in a new environment.
      Our girls took a day to get their heads around the new additions. The first day, there was lots of noise but yesterday 2 of them took turns jumping onto my lap, I guess just to see if the world looked any different from three foot up.


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