So you have just bought home some Rescue Hens and given them a second chance! THANKYOU! Your new chooks will love you forever.
Now what should you do so that they have a good transition from coming from a commercial way of living to being able to live their life out with you.
A happy chook is a stress free chook.
These rescues are usually used to water for drinking from a drip feed system. So making sure that they have constant clean water is important. The other is that they have constant feed given to them as well. Usually the feed is a mash commercial feed that is high in protein 17% plus! Usually a higher protein feed they will eat less because they can get what they need, so paying a little bit more for a good feed will pay off. Good feed means they will start to lay again in their new environment especially if its spring and summer. A pellet feed is fine and they will adjust but talk to your local produce store about a higher protein feed. Once they adjust to eating your scraps, free ranging and getting used to their new life within weeks most of your rescues will repay you with eggs and lots of love.
Remember rescues are usually into their second and third season of laying and egg production will slowly reduce as they get older. Most that purchase rescues are happy to give them a home and that love that they deserve afterall they have supplied eggs for those that are buying eggs that may not have the opportunity to own chooks in their home.
Another thing to remember is they may not know how to roost! They may not realise that a nest box has now a comfy bedding like straw or sawdust and you may find them laying anywhere to begin with. Pop a egg in the nesting boxes and they will get the idea as most just love their new comfort way of living. Most of these chooks especially if they come from a commercial battery farm have never touched the ground. Again don’t worry won’t take them long to discover how to scratch and sunbath on their new ground if you are allowing them to free range too.
Introducing them when you get them home to their new home or existing flock. We suggest keeping them locked up for a few day in their run so they learn where their feed and water is and where to sleep. With an exisiting flock we like to make sure they have heaps of room to work out their peck