1 out of 7 chicks continues to pluck other chicks feathers causing bleeding

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by katieharris18, Apr 11, 2017.

  1. katieharris18

    katieharris18 Hatching

    Jun 13, 2014
    Corvallis, OR
    This is my second small flock ever, so I am still kinda new. I bought six chicks but had to go to another store for this particular breed I wanted. Ever since I introduced this new chick she has been constantly pulling out the others feathers. Now its been maybe 2 weeks and she continues to do this despite my efforts to give them more space, add more protein to the diet, and make the heat lamp further from the cage so it isnt hot. She hasnt caused bleeding lately like she was in the beginning, however, I am now seeing her eat the feathers.
    I am torn, because separating her may cause her much stress, but I dont want the others to become like her and to continue to suffer the constant pecking....

    What should I do?!

  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Welcome to BYC!

    More info would help.
    How old are these chicks?
    How many are there?
    How big is your brooder in feet by feet?
    Pics would really help.

    If I have an overly aggressive chick, I put it in 'jail' for a time out(30-60 minutes) repeat as necessary.
    1/2" hardware cloth 'chick jail':
    Put it over the chick right in the brooder.
    You could also just tie a piece of HC in a circle to make a 'corral' about 8" tall.
  3. WesleyBeal

    WesleyBeal Chirping

    Nov 28, 2016
    Douglas County, Minnesota
    What I've read says that feather eating is a sign of a need for more protein. Sounds like you're already trying to increase that. Maybe boost it more? Don't know if you're feeding it smashed hard boiled eggs. That's the first thing I'd try if it were happening to me.
  4. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    May 19, 2009
    There's a study out on the Net that revealed feather picking was reduced if you added probiotics to their diet. you might try that. Aldi's makes a real nice organic plain vanilla yogurt
    try giving them some yogurt see if it stops.

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