7 wk old chick suddenly pecking at each other ?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by STAR1270, Aug 14, 2013.

  1. STAR1270

    STAR1270 New Egg

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    Jun 1, 2013
    Reno, NV
    I have 1 EE (prob. a rooster), 4 Americaunas (1 possibly a roo), 1 B.O.(hen) and 2 Black Frizzle Cochin Banty's (1 of each) now about 7 weeks old. They were all brooded together since less less than a week old. Originally the only one missing feathers on his back above his tail was the presumed roo Banty. I thought that is was just because he was getting his feathers in later than the girl (one sign he is a roo). But today I noticed that now the girl banty and one of the Amer's are now missing feathers in the same place. And the roo Banty is now missing them on the front of the neck. I have checked them and do not see any fleas/mites. I also keep DE mixed in their sand in the coop and in their dust bath in the run to prevent bugs. They are fed the Purina Medicated Start & Grow (free fed in gravity feeders). ACV in water once a week. Also supplement with garden greens/veggies/etc. in the AM and PM in hanging suet cages to prevent boredom, plus afternoon mealworm treat. So I would think they are getting plenty of protein. I have sat and watched them and do not really see them pecking at each other, at least when I am around. They have a 5x4x5 house with a 4' roost, and a 5x10 run underneath, so I don't think it's overcrowding either (they aren't THAT big yet). My question is what could have started the pecking all of a sudden? We just rehomed a EE Rooster (the boss of the coop) this past weekend. Could that have anything to do with it? Are they trying to reestablish the pecking order (excuse the pun..)? Is there anything I can do to help protect the backs of the ones that are bare skin until the feathers grow back in (like a saddle?). Should I add another roost in the henhouse? I want to nip this in the bud before they really start drawing blood. I don't want to have to separate them, unless absolutely necessary. Thanks to all for any insight you can provide.

    -Star1270
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    South Georgia

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