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baby mouse age when put with other mice question, colony size question

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Post by centerge Fri 15 Jan 2021, 11:15 pm

A mouse I got for my daughter ended up being pregnant. She was one of three adult females that got along well. They were super cute together and really friendly. A couple days before she had her babies, I separated her and set her up with a nursery per the breeding packet. The babies are now 4 weeks old and I paid to have them sexed and have separated out the males.

I would like to put the female babies and the Mom back with the other two older female mice. When can I do this without the Mom getting upset? Things went well for an hour or so tonight when we put them all together on neutral territory, but then later the Mom was really aggressively chasing and nipping at the two older females. Other than that everybody was doing really well together. I had hoped to leave them all together going forward, but I wasn't comfortable with it after seeing them get chased and nipped at.

How old should the babies be before I put all the females (babies and older) all back together and just let them work it out?
Also, when they're back together there will be 10 females together (until I can find homes for many of them) is this too many in one large space?
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Post by River Sat 16 Jan 2021, 12:27 am

Some chasing is to be expected. As long as there's no blood / it doesn't look particularly violent, I leave them to it. They have to sort things out and you just have to let them. As long as there's an appropriate amount of space, 10 girls should do fine together.

@Peachy may have more answers about how old they should be when you introduce them to the other adults?

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Post by Peachy Sat 16 Jan 2021, 6:59 am

My first litter’s mom lost her mind when I tried to introduce her sister to her babies. Definitely wasn’t a happy moment. Laughing Generally, weaning takes place between 3-4 weeks so anytime after four weeks should be ok to make introductions, but I wait between 6-8 weeks now so babies become a bit more independent and Mom snaps out of motherhood.
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Post by ApricotWinter Tue 02 Feb 2021, 1:08 pm

I have found it is a good idea to introduce the babys to adults in a nuetral place without the mother at first. Though it really just depends on the mouse...
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Post by centerge Sat 13 Feb 2021, 11:44 pm

An update on this situation. I waited until the babies were 8 weeks old and put everybody together in a clean, pretty much empty, smaller bin with food and water. That's the Mom, 4 of her 8 week old female babies, and the two older mice. Within about an hour there was loud squeaking and when I went to check it out the mother had two bites on her back with blood. They weren't super bad, but blood. I took the mother out with one of her babies and put them in a separate cage. The rest of them (3 babies, and the two older ones) have figured it out and are doing well. They're in a more reasonably sized bin now with all the toys and wheels that would be expected.

I'm wondering how to safely get the mother and last baby into that group. I'd really prefer to have them in a single large bin. Does anybody have any advice on what steps I should take from here to do this safely?

I'll add that I'm fairly certain that the mother is older. She moves similarly to my older cat, kind of stiff. And while she can get around fine, she has some problems getting up not very high steps and can't handle vertical tubes well.

Anyway, if you have any tips on getting them into one group without more bloodshed, I'm all ears and would appreciate the advice.
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