This year we had a hen to hatch and raise a chick. Only one. He/she is now six weeks old. They are in a separate coop and the mother hen is tired of being confined although she has lots of room. We have twelve hens and one rooster who are used to free ranging during the afternoon and she's ready to do that again.

It is too soon to let them out and go back to the regular coop? We have a small farm and there are predators. We do our best but we can't be with them 24/7.

The local feed store is selling chicks who are five and six weeks' old for $3.50. I wondered if we could get a few of these young ones so that the lone chick would have age-related pals.

If so, would the mother hen be ok with them being in the same coop she is in now? Or, should we let the mother hen and chick go back in with the regular group in the original coop and separate the newbies for the time being?

Am new on this forum and would appreciate advice. Thanks.