5-week old chicks suddenly hate each other?

Kyochan

Songster
Aug 5, 2013
209
10
114
I have 3 little 5-week old chicks in my brooder and they are about to go out in the big-kid grow-out coop this coming weekend. However, last night two of them decided they could not stand each other and started fighting. I let it go for a minute (watching carefully) in case it was play or a scuffle that would pass quickly but when it went on for a few minutes and I started to fear they would hurt each other I seperated them.

I'm not sure who is the problem chick, though. I took out Eli and left Mel (the other fighter) in the brooder with Ili (the little docile chick) and they got along fine. Then I took Mel out and put Eli and Ili in together. They got along fine. It's just Mel and Eli who can't stand each other all of a sudden.

Anyone have any ideas what could have started this? I've never had problems with them before, not even play chest-bumps. Is 5 weeks old enough for two roo's to be fighting over a hen? Or two aggressive 'alpha' hens to start butting heads?
 

chfite

Songster
10 Years
Jun 7, 2011
2,171
123
236
Taylors, SC
That sounds like settling the pecking order. This is an important feature of a flock, who's in charge. Once they sort it out, peace will prevail until some change occurs.

Chris
 

donrae

Hopelessly Addicted
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Jun 18, 2010
31,453
4,094
581
Southern Oregon
My first thought is they're getting crowded. They're getting pretty big for a brooder at this age, how large is it?
 

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