How to introduce chicks into the flock
I have four Australorp chicks (born March 28th) that are 2 months old. I ordered them from the feed store and raised them inside until I thought they were big enough to meet the rest of the flock. Well, I introduced them yesterday and I thought things were going well, but I had to take them out because the other chickens really beat them up pretty badly. How do I do this without having injured chickens? I sat out there all day with them and watched them interact and it seemed to go well. It was after they went into the coop they were terrorized. Would it help to put them outside with the older birds during the day and take them into the house at night, doing a gradual exposure? I assume there will always be some scuffling establishing the new pecking order, but I would like it to be a "kindler, gentler" transition. Any advice would be appreciated.