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Roostet getting in on pecking order??

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi,

 

I recently had a chicken who fell ill so I had isolated her and nursed her back to health. I have been trying to reintroduce her to her former flock, and the other chickens are being especially vicious towards her. Today, two chickens cornered her while one hopped on her back and drew blood from her comb while pecking at her head. The oddest thing was that one of my roosters joined in and pecked her as well. Has anyone ever had a rooster join in when trying to restore pecking order??? I would like to note that I currently have two roosters in that same run (it is fairly large) and almost 30 hens. The rooster who pecked her is the less dominant rooster.

 

I once again removed her as I was afraid that they would kill her. I'm just curious as to whether the chickens sense something off with the her that I am not aware of, or if they're being especially aggressive because I haven't been allowing them to free range all over my yard for the last two weeks or so as they trash my new spring flower growth (thinking maybe they're just agitated and cranky). Any insight would be much appreciated! Thanks in advance!!

post #2 of 7

How long was she isolated from the flock?  If it's been a while they likely won't view her as part of the flock and you'll not be able to just toss her back in with them without aggression.  If she's weak and recovering (or still showing signs of illness/weakness) that will only make things worse..

 

I'd suggest reintroducing her slowly.

On vaccinating v/s Marek's Disease - ( here & here )
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On vaccinating v/s Marek's Disease - ( here & here )
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 


Hi Owen, thanks for the reply. She was isolated for almost two weeks as I had her on antibiotics. She seems fine to me now, scratching around in the large dog crate I have her in and making her usual chicken noises. I put her in at night one night, and peeking through the window I could see the other chickens pecking her on the pole. I took her out that night and decided to try again two days later (yesterday). I put her in again last night, only I turned their heat lamp off so they couldn't see her. This morning when I let them out in the run and observed, was when I witnessed them bullying her again. Should I try introducing her at night and then letting them out of the run in the morning so they're not as defensive of their food or something?

post #4 of 7

Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)

I set fire to the rain! Watch it pour as I, touched your face. Well it burn while I cried, because I heard it screaming out your name. And I threw us into flames. I knew that was the last time, the last time...I set fire to the rain! -Adele

 

Look at my flock page! http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bantamfan4lifes-flock

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I set fire to the rain! Watch it pour as I, touched your face. Well it burn while I cried, because I heard it screaming out your name. And I threw us into flames. I knew that was the last time, the last time...I set fire to the rain! -Adele

 

Look at my flock page! http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bantamfan4lifes-flock

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post #5 of 7

Hi and welcome to BYC - glad that you have joined us.

 

I hope the link below will help a little.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/introducing-a-single-hen-to-an-existing-flock

 

All the best

CT

Nairobi, Kenya
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Nairobi, Kenya
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post #6 of 7

Chickens are like pack animals,  they will attack  one or another for almost any reason  and kill it if given the  chance.  They've had too many chances  at trying to hurt her.  Please read about the "Look but, don't touch method." of integration.  Secondly putting her in at night - only means you won't see them going after her  and she could be dead by morning. This is beyond pecking order - they don't want her because she is a stranger to them.  Pecking can quickly   turn to cannibalism - I'm sure you don't want that to happen.

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post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the warm welcome everyone :) Glad to join the community! I really appreciate all of the suggestions, I will absolutely give them a try! I've integrated new hens before, but never just a single hen. I didn't realize there would be such a difference. I certainly don't want to wake up or come home to her dead : / Thanks again!!

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