A space issue, or not?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by missusduray, Jul 2, 2007.

  1. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    So we have been frantically trying to get the new coop done so that we could move the 14, 4 week old chicks out of the house. Well on saturday, I discovered that they had picked the feathers on the lower back part of one of my Brahmas, above the tail. So I separated her with one of the nicest pullets and kept them in the house. I moved the others out to a play yard so that they could peck ans scratch at the ground. Then I got ready a larger but very temporary brooder. I put them in there overnight. I went to check on them sunday and they had done it again. So I separated again. Again it was another brahma. So I worked my buns off and got the coop all done and I hung a light for them. I got them out there lastnight. I went to check them again this morning and there was ANOTHER brahma pecked. This time it was the roo and he was pecked bald by his neck, kind of on the side partly under his chin. I am at a loss. I thought it was a space issue. Lastnight after i moved them into the 8x10 coop I dug some grass and dirt up for them to pick at so I could hopefully distract them from pecking. Maybe the last one happened on saturday as well and maybe I didnt see it. I am going to see if there are any others that it happens to. I am hoping that the new space will have fixed the problem. Any other suggestions or advice on what to do?
    Kristyne
     
  2. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    Ok so I am just going to assume that everyone thinks that it is a space issue since no one has replied. Maybe someone will reply tonight.
    Kristyne
     
  3. Country Gal

    Country Gal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 2, 2007
    Capac, MI
    Any more pecking issues since you moved them into the coop?

    I was running into the same issues with my buff orpingtons... they were in a small brooder, then I bumped them into a temporary "large" brooder (4x8), and they were still getting pecked. I haven't had any more issues since moving them into their coop, which is 8x10.

    If you have your 14 in an 8x10 coop, and they're still pecking, I'm thinking it's something other than a space issue. I have 27 in my 8x10 and I haven't had any pecking problems since...

    Good luck!
     
  4. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    I was just out moving them to their play yard. None of the other ones were pecked at. So I am hoping that it is just a space thing. I really need windows in the coop as it is terribly hot in there. At least I have a yard to put them into so that they can be in the shade. Thanks for your input. I was wondering if it was something more serious that i needed to worry about. Thanks for alleviating my fears.
    Kristyne
     
  5. hisbride

    hisbride Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 18, 2007
    GA
    I have found that once they start pecking at one even if you remove the chick that got pecked they will peck again when you return it. I put Blu-Kote on the pecked areas and when they went to peck they got a nasty taste! It helps to cover the open area and prevents the pecking. It will stain the feathers but your chicks are younge enough that when they feather out they will drop the stained feathers. I don't know why they are pecking others after you have moved then into a larger area though.
     
  6. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Not always a space issue. For the first time, I had this happen. My four Delawares picked the backs and tails of seven Speckled Sussex in a two hour period. I had about 25 small chicks in a space larger than 4x7 with a high ceiling and lots of air flow. As the feathers were coming in on the SS's backs, they were very "quilly" and they just started in on them. They plucked one Ameraucana girl's tail bloody, too. It was basically breed against breed and I had to separate the four Delaware chicks for a couple of weeks. When I put them back in, they were the ones running for their lives, LOL. Payback aint pretty sometimes. The Delaware cockerels were more aggressive than the others, but after the SS finally got feathers rather than quills, things calmed down alot. Eventually, the Delawares became much calmer and everyone was getting along just fine. SO, to make the point, it may not be a space issue, although that is usually the cause.
     
  7. JillsChicks

    JillsChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 31, 2007
    Western NY
    Can lighting be an issue? We use infrared heat lamps instead of bare bulbs in brooders... Could this be why?

    I'm no expert; my chicks are only a week old, but they stopped pecking each other as soon as I changed to the infrared lamp.

    Best of luck,
    Ann
     
  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Don't know- in my case, it wasn't. They only had a night light most of that time and an open screen/wire door with daylight pouring in all day when it was warm enough. When you have a picking problem in a brooder, it's best to change to a red light, but there are other situations that just aren't caused by the light issue.
     
  9. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Just out of curiosity, I'm wondering if these problems are ever seen in hen raised babies. Does anyone know?
     
  10. missusduray

    missusduray Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 20, 2007
    Northern Minnesota
    Update,
    I did have one more get pecked. It was my partridge rock roo, henry. It was a couple days ago. It happened when they were in their outside 4x4 yard. We got the run done now, it is 20x13. I put one back that had the least amount of pecking. It was a small spot on his neck. I did put some blu kote on it. There didnt seem to be any more pecking and i watched them for a long time. The worst 3 are still in the chicken hospital in my house. They are now 5 weeks old. I am tired of having chickens in my house now. I would like them all to be outside in the new coop. All it needs now is the roost and 2 windows. Goodness, are we ever going to be done with it?
    Here is a pic of the new coop and run. I hope that the pecking has stopped.
    [​IMG]
    Kristyne
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2007

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