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Bumper bits - I just installed one on my hen - Page 3

post #21 of 25
I got one for my rooster. They are now available in the U.S. I can't wait to put it on him !
post #22 of 25
Thread Starter 

The bit can be very helpful and effective in curbing picking behavior, but a few words of caution.


Keep an eye on how he's eating. He should have no trouble, but some chickens are so intimidated by the bit, they refuse to try to eat.


The other problem is you need to watch his beak tip. The tip is protected by the bit from natural wear, and I've seen a beak grow long and begin to crowd the bit. You may need to remove the bit after several weeks and trim the beak tip, just snipping off the tip of the upper beak.


Another thing to look out for is breakage. The black color absorbs solar radiation and deteriorates, resulting in breakage. That's also happened to me, and I didn't even notice it because the bit was still in place, just the end part that keeps the beak from closing was missing.


I doubt you'll see anything in the instruction manual about these things, if there is one..


But like pinless peepers, some chickens manage to work around the bit and resume feather picking. So monitor his behavior.

post #23 of 25
It is to protect the hens from his mating behavior. I also bought them saddles.
post #24 of 25
Thread Starter 

I take it he's grasping feathers instead of the skin of the hens' necks.


The bit may make it more difficult for the rooster to maintain his balance while mating, causing even more distress to the hen, even though it may save a few feathers.


The bits are helpful to discourage feather picking. I've not heard them being used on roosters to mitigate mating behavior.


I wouldn't expect it's going to be very productive.


I've always had good luck segregating cockerels and roosters that are rough on the hens. Currently, I have a cockerel who focuses on a single older hen, much to her distress, so he gets time-outs regularly to give her some rest.

post #25 of 25
I beat mine with a stick and long crop. It seems to work. I have also found that a nice tight rooster collar helps this behavior. I use saddles and this seems to help to protect the hens. I have never had a rooster pull off back feathers even without it. I have to admit, I have never delt with a roo being really bad, but I'm pretty tough on them. Strait from the get go. They are here to make my hens happy, not terrorize them. My hens work very hard for me they lay almost everyday and lay all year long. My oldest is 7yr and has finally not Layed for 6 months 2015 and has resumed for the past 3 months and stopped again. I really think that the rooster helps. He feeds them all the time and makes them nest and sits with them while they lay. It drives me crazy as he takes up space in the nest box. He will very occasionally force himself on a hen, but for the most he is very good. When my hens don't like a rooster he goes. His value is predicted only by my hens liking him. He also attacks me regularly. Which is ok he is doing his job. Gosh forbid I grab a hen, and she screams. He also watches me very closely when I'm handling them. If she doesn't scream I don't get attacked. When I bring him out in the morning all the hens congregate at the gate and sqawk. When I throw him over the fence they all run to him and he dances all around roll.png My assumption is that they like him a lot.
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