antisocial hen

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by agarita, Aug 1, 2010.

  1. agarita

    agarita New Egg

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    Aug 1, 2010
    Hi. New to the Forum, I've not seen this exact issue... I'm a recent recipient of two new hand-raised hens (so they're sociable with humans) but "Harriet" is extremely shy with the rest of the flock. The other chicken quickly adapted to the others, but Harriet remains aloof, and I've had to hand-carry her into the coop after a day of freedon. Chief the Rooster makes it difficult, and if Harriet makes the slightest peep, Chief is ready to tear into me.... Now I'm ready to send him into retirement... any ideas for making Harriet more sociable, and/or am I making a mistake getting rid of the rooster?
     
  2. tinychicky

    tinychicky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 24, 2010
    Hollis, New Hampshire
    i'd say keep the rooster. removing the head bird can cause major disruption in the flock's pecking order. try getting harriet accustomed to first you, then the lowest hen in the peck order, then the second lowest, and so on. i find letting them all out to free range, then putting them all back in the coop together also does the trick for introducing new birds.
     
  3. agarita

    agarita New Egg

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    Aug 1, 2010
    Maybe I'm being impatient. I've had the new chicken(s) not quite two weeks, and for first full week I kept EVERYBODY (total of 8 including the rooster) inside the chicken run..... That entire time Harriet stayed away from all the others...Now I've begun letting them out again, and all but Harriet and another (not necessarily the 2nd lowest on pecking order, either) are outside the run today .........

    The rooster doesn't seem to understand that I am not the enemy, and I've already had to defend myself twice today. Not that I was doing anything to anybody, but I was between him and the coop when somebody inside squawked! And he jumped a child recently (leaving part of his spur in her ankle!) ... this aggressiveness only began in May or June when two of the hens went broody. They're over it, but he's not! What to do?
     
  4. Finn's Mom

    Finn's Mom Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think you should retire your rooster! You don't need that kind of hassle from a chicken. There are plenty of roosters out there that will do a good job for you and will be content with your home without attacking you or anyone else . I don't know how involved the rooster is with your Harriet but I bet if he leaves, the dynamics will change. Go on over to chicken behaviors and laying and you will get lots of seasoned advice.
    Good luck and welcome to BYC! So glad you joined!
     

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