Originally Posted by nirtak
I'm so thankful for this site and for your replies, mirandaleecon!
My friend visited today and she confirmed the broodiness. I blocked the nesting boxes today after all the chickens had laid their eggs. I have yet to find a rabbit cage. Should have been better prepared, I guess.
When she didn't have her hideout, she did get attacked by yet another of the sexlinks. She's not defensive at all despite being broody.
What's the best think to do now? The sexlinks all seem to attack her, but the one I separated seemed to be the main aggressor. Keep that one separate, try to end the broodiness, hope it's better afterwards?
Thanks once again
Hey, sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, weekends are always busy busy...Is she still broody?
I think separating the aggressor was probably the best thing to do. Whenever you separate a chicken, the pecking order gets re-sorted. When you bring her back in, she will start back at the bottom. There will be some fighting to get re-established but it should bring her down a notch.
When/if you try to break your hen of being broody, try to do it in an area where the others can still see her. If you totally separate her, she will start at the bottom when you reintroduce her. Fine for an aggressive hen because they can handle being at the bottom, not good for a submissive hen because she will stay at the bottom.
How much space do they have? Fighting is usually much worse when the submissive hen can't get away. You might want to look at building a bigger run or actually free-ranging would be best but I know that's not always possible. You could also reduce your flock which would definitely help with fighting...
I have also heard of people removing all but the submissive hen and one aggressive hen. Wait a bit then reintroduce the others one at a time. Basically just scrambling the pecking order but giving the submissive hen a better chance.