Introducing Isabel, Rosie and Bronwyn

Today Isabel, Rosie and Bronwyn  moved into their new home. We bought our 3 Isa Brown chickens this morning.

The hens made the journey to our place in this lovely cardboard carton. They chuckled nicely in the car on the way. Very well behaved, but not even remotely potty trained. They’ve already made their first deposit to our compost!

Isabel is on the left (with the more pronounced neck feather colouration), Rosie is in the centre (dark red, smaller and, as of yet, with a very tiny comb), Bronwyn is on the right.

We picked them up (Rosie ducked but the others seemed pleasantly resigned to their fate) and plunked them into their coop. It took them less than 90 seconds to find the feeder and start at it. If I didn’t know better, I’d say they were famished.

After they’d been locked in their coop for about 2 hours, we went out and sat and watched them for a little while. Not surprisingly they were scratching and pecking and eating and drinking. Very chicken-like. We’ll leave them locked in for several days so they get used to thinking of this new area as home. That should make it easier to herd them in later. We’ll hang out a lot and start handling them in a few days so they get used to us. This breed gets very comfortable with humans and we plan to get very comfortable with them.

They are reportedly 16 weeks old. The guy who sold them to us told us they should start laying in 4 weeks (when they’re 20 weeks old) but I’ve read it’s more like at 26 weeks so we’ll see. They’ve got a bit of growing to do, need to put on weight, and they have to settle down. After all this, we should get a steady harvest of eggs through the winter and for a couple of years before they slack off and go into early retirement.

At this point I’m picking Isabel as Queen Chook followed by Rosie and then Bronwyn at the bottom of the pecking order. But their whole world has been rocked so I may not be seeing the real them yet. The main thing is that they get along. I can’t imagine anything worse than having bullies living in my back yard. They are flocking nicely as they move about so I’m reasonably sure they’ll be BFFs.

About Laura Rittenhouse

I'm an American-Australian author, gardener and traveller. Go to my writing website: for more. If you're trying to find my gardening blog, it's here.
This entry was posted in Chickens, Sustainability and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Introducing Isabel, Rosie and Bronwyn

  1. Welcome! they certainly look happy and healthy.

  2. karensperspective says:

    Seriously, Laura? They’re all “flocking nicely”? You’re learning chicken language? I continue to be amazed. Chicken pets. Well, what they don’t give you in affection, they make up for in protein. Interesting trade off.

  3. I’m confident that they will give affection, in fact they already do. When I go into their enclosure, they gravitate towards me – Bronwyn makes a beeline. Yesterday I sat in their space and Rosie came and sat down leaning against my foot. They are darlings already.

  4. This is the stage I am at with my 2 new chickens. I got 2 barnevelders at 16 weeks and have had them 1 week in their coop (the same one as yours.) Tomorrow is the big day to let them out for few hours to free range. We are not fenced but we have a 24×7 free range chicken that I hope they become friends with and she teaches them not to run away.
    The idea is to free range them through the day and shut them in the coop at night. That’s the plan anyway. I’m enjoying your blog.

    • Good luck with integrating the new chickens with the hen. I’ve heard that introductions between chickens often turn into battles as the pecking order is established. I’m guessing pullets will be submissive to the queen chook so they won’t need to be beat up. I hope so.

      I began by luring mine back into their run 1 hour before dusk because I was afraid they’d roost somewhere strange. After a couple of weeks I was late one night and they found their own way in. I think after spending a few days in their coop they have decided it is home and so I don’t worry they’ll wander away any more. But just to be sure I give them treats every day so they’ll come running whenever I call.

  5. Pingback: Happy Anniversary Girls | Laura Rittenhouse's Gardening Journal

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