After mink attack, Rooster acting depressed

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by SherwoodForest, Jan 7, 2014.

  1. SherwoodForest

    SherwoodForest Hatching

    Jan 7, 2014
    This past week, a mink attacked and killed seven of our chickens. We have two roosters who fought. The dominant rooster, Hoss, suffered only a tiny wound on his comb; the other Roo, Telly, suffered more cuts and wounds, which we cleaned and applied antibiotic too.
    Funny this is, Telly is doing fine and acting like the dominate rooster now, while Hoss sits in the corner alone, and doesn't seem to be eating or drinking. He did get on the roost last night for the first night in a few I thought perhaps he was recovering from whatever was bothering him, but this morning he was back in the corner of the coop again. I have checked him over and over and see no signs of injury. Could he be depressed about losing seven of his girls, or what is going on?
    I brought him in this morning to keep an eye on him better. Any suggestions/comments?

  2. Stewarts

    Stewarts Songster

    Feb 26, 2013
    PEI, Canada
    Chickens feel the loss of others in their flock. I think he just needs a little extra attention. I'd sit in with him and the other birds and reassure him, he seems to have lost his self-confidence and sometimes just spending time with your birds in the coop to really see what's going on, will tell you the story. Telly could be picking on him and you don't know about it. One chicken's behavior can be very intimidating to another chicken. You need to find out, for sure, what exactly is going on in there.

    I sit in with my birds from time to time, from an hour to two hours, either in the coop or the hutch. I like to maintain a relationship with my birds and know who is doing what, to whom so I can check the unwanted behaviors.
  3. One Chick Two

    One Chick Two Songster

    Jun 13, 2013
    Hi... first I just wanted to say I'm so very sorry for your loss. [​IMG]

    I too think your roo may be depressed. He may very well have may have lost his favorite hen(s) in the attack. I really think these things deeply shake them sometimes. Does Hoss have enough girls (like 5-10) of his own to care for? There has been a big pecking order shift.Telly sounds like he is stepping up, and at least at this time, he is dominant- that may shift again later.

    I sure hope someone has some advice or thoughts on what to do for a depressed roo. We too, have a depressed cockerel. Right before Xmas eve, we also had a raven attack our no.1 cockerel (we have 84 chicken, 16 other roos and cockerels.). He is blinded in his left eye... but at least the eye is there. If we hadn't discovered what was happening and rushed over to help, he would be gone now. Scary thing is, he's a ginormous, 10 lb RIR. If they go after a huge boy like him, they are desperate enough to go after any bird!

    Anyway, now that he's mostly healed now, he's back in with the flock with cheered him a bit. He is very depressed, and spends his time in corners, or away from the others and occasionally makes sad sounds. We've been feeding him specifically away from the others (they are food hogs) and spending lots of time with him. I know he realizes he will never be the same and mourns that. It makes me sad for him. Some of the other cockerels challenge him and he runs away- so different than before. Poor fellow. I just don't know what else can be done for depression in fowl after trauma...
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2014

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