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New hen = Missing featers

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hello,

I got two new beautiful 2 year old Cochin hens, they came to me with all their feathers.

However they came into my group and been pecked at (I know it is the pecking order) however... As she came she has lost a lot of feathers on her chest and some of her skin looks as if she has been bleeding and plucked alive.

 

The two girls don't peck back as such and show the language "ok, your in charge just stop pecking me and I will get out of your way"

 

All I would like to know is....

What is the best way to help her feathers grow back?

How long will it take to grow them back?

 

So far my girls and boys have...

-Dried grass and hay

-Mealworms on special occasions (changing weather generally)

-Grit

-Corn

-Pallets

-Plus bugs they find

post #2 of 6
Once there is blood it is past normal pecking order. I would seperate her and your other hen from the rest of the flock, let them heal. Maybe a cage in your coop where the two hens can be seen but not touched. If you do reintroduce them to the flock make certain you have two seperate (and not within sight) feed and water sources.
ETA: You might look for Blue Kote, it should be at the feed store. It will color your hens wounds blue so the two seperate hens do not peck at each other
Edited by OrganicFarmWife - 3/30/16 at 8:45pm
post #3 of 6
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by OrganicFarmWife View Post

Once there is blood it is past normal pecking order. I would seperate her and your other hen from the rest of the flock, let them heal. Maybe a cage in your coop where the two hens can be seen but not touched. If you do reintroduce them to the flock make certain you have two seperate (and not within sight) feed and water sources.
ETA: You might look for Blue Kote, it should be at the feed store. It will color your hens wounds blue so the two seperate hens do not peck at each other


Hello,

Thank you, I know this sounds very stupid or something, but all of my hens seems to be very vicious when there is a new member around, such as they all gang up at once, is there any specific way I could introduce them to new hens?

Plus I am unable to separate my girls due to no room and other cages.

post #5 of 6
http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/76381/introducing-new-hen-to-the-coop#post_815667
This article talks about it alot. One on here used a tub covered with chicken wire and then a dog crate. You really must seperate them. They will kill your 2 new hens if you cannot.
post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by WoodGG View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by OrganicFarmWife View Post

Once there is blood it is past normal pecking order. I would seperate her and your other hen from the rest of the flock, let them heal. Maybe a cage in your coop where the two hens can be seen but not touched. If you do reintroduce them to the flock make certain you have two seperate (and not within sight) feed and water sources.
ETA: You might look for Blue Kote, it should be at the feed store. It will color your hens wounds blue so the two seperate hens do not peck at each other


Hello,

Thank you, I know this sounds very stupid or something, but all of my hens seems to be very vicious when there is a new member around, such as they all gang up at once, is there any specific way I could introduce them to new hens?

Plus I am unable to separate my girls due to no room and other cages.

Welcome to BYC! Sorry you're having troubles with your birds.

 

This is typical chicken behavior ...integration of new birds needs some thought and planning before hand.

The existing birds are protecting their territory and resources (space, food/water) from the interlopers.

You may need to purchase something quickly to stop the damage to your new birds.

Wire dog crates are very handy for this purpose.

 

Separate enclosures are needed ~96% of the time for 'no-touch' introductions before allowing birds physical contact.

 

Lots of space, multiple feed/water stations, and places to hide 'out of line of sight'(but not dead end traps) and/or up and away from aggressors will make integrating new birds much easier for all beings involved.

 

 

Here's some notes I've taken on integration that I found to be very helpful.......

......take what applies or might help and ignore the rest.

See if any of them, or the links provided at the bottom, might offer some tips that will assist you in your situation:

 

Integration of new chickens into flock.

 

Consider medical quarantine:

BYC Medical Quarantine Article

Poultry Biosecurity

BYC 'medical quarantine' search

 

It's about territory and resources(space/food/water). Existing birds will almost always attack new ones.

Understanding chicken behaviors is essential to integrating new birds into your flock.

 

Confine new birds within sight but physically segregated from older/existing birds for several weeks, so they can see and get used to each other but not physically interact. Integrating new birds of equal size works best.

 

The more space, the better. Birds will peck to establish dominance, the pecked bird needs space to get away. As long as there's no blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down, let them work it out. Every time you interfere or remove new birds, they'll have to start the pecking order thing all over again.

 

Multiple feed/water stations. Dominance issues are most often carried out over sustenance, more stations lessens the frequency of that issue.

 

Places for the new birds to hide out of line of sight and/or up and away from any bully birds.

 

In adjacent runs, spread scratch grains along the dividing mesh, best of mesh is just big enough for birds to stick their head thru, so they get used to eating together.

 

Another option, if possible, is to put all birds in a new coop and run, this takes the territoriality issues away.

 

For smaller chicks I used a large wire dog crate right in the coop for the smallers. I removed the crate door and put up a piece of wire fencing over the opening and bent up one corner just enough for the smallers to fit thru but the biggers could not. Feed and water inside the crate for the smallers. Make sure the smallers know how to get in and out of the crate opening before exposing them to the olders. this worked out great for me, by the time the crate was too small for the them to roost in there(about 3 weeks), they had pretty much integrated themselves to the olders. If you have too many smallers to fit in a crate you can partition off part of the coop with a wire wall and make the same openings for smallers escape.

 

Best example ever of chick respite and doors by azygous http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1069595/introducing-chicks-to-adults#post_16276224

 

 

Read up on integration.....  BYC advanced search>titles only>integration

This is good place to start reading:

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/adding-to-your-flock

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply

Great article on VENTILATION, one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of coop design.

Fantastic treatise to help decide how much SPACE your chickens need.

 

Chicken math is not just 'addition'...but also should include Division, Multiplication and especially Subtraction!!!

 

Quoting centrarchid:

"Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it."

Reply
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