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Bossy hen won't accept pullets

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
I started my flock with 3 hens. After we moved 2 got out of the coop and we're killed by my dog, leaving only on (she is a large barred cochin). She was never bossy or noisy when there were 3, but now she's out of control. If she hears me flush the toilet early in thr morning she starts squawking. She's almost noisier than a rooster. I live in a suburban area, so I need her to not be as noisy buy I'm not sure how. She'll even be noisy if she has food and water. I can't let her free range as much as I'd like because of my dog. But they were never able to free range daily even before the dog attack. She has also been attacked by my dog, but I nursed her back. She just had some skin and feathers get ripped off and she healed quickly.
Now here is what I struggle with the most. Once the other two chickens were killed, I got 4 chicks (americauna, black sex link, golden sex link and blue cochin) so that we could continue to have eggs. The coop situation has been fixed, so the dog can't get in at all and the chickens can't get out. The pullets are about 3 months old now and have been outside for about a month in their own run right beside the hen's coop. My first 3 attempts at introducing them has failed. The larger hen has attacked at least one pullet each time. Today I tried it while they were free ranging, so they had plenty of room and their own food and water. I don't want to rehome her, but I'm at a loss for how to.get them to get along.I thought having them side by side for a month would help with integrating them, but it hasn't.
post #2 of 3

:welcome

 

The "Look but don't touch" method may help lessen the integration stress, but it seems they still need to physically establish a pecking order once they are all together. Do you have hiding places for the young ones? Lean some plywood or pallets against the fence or something for them to get out of her line of vision. Make sure to leave two ways in and out so one of the pullets can't get trapped. Until they get put together, they will not just nice play together after a magic length of time. As long as no blood is being drawn, let them work it out. 

Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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post #3 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbi-j View Post
 

:welcome

 

The "Look but don't touch" method may help lessen the integration stress, but it seems they still need to physically establish a pecking order once they are all together. Do you have hiding places for the young ones? Lean some plywood or pallets against the fence or something for them to get out of her line of vision. Make sure to leave two ways in and out so one of the pullets can't get trapped. Until they get put together, they will not just nice play together after a magic length of time. As long as no blood is being drawn, let them work it out. 

Ditto Dat^^^

 

It can just take time....hen will lord it over chicks probably always...

....tho they might mingle more once chicks start to lay.

 

Do the chicks live in their run 24/7 next to the hens coop so they can always see each other?

How big (in feet by feet) are the coops and runs?

Might try putting hen in chicks space and chicks in hens space for an afternoon..chicken juggling.

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."

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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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