Attack chicken?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by peartreehens, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. peartreehens

    peartreehens Out Of The Brooder

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    May 10, 2013
    Hi all. This is Sarah.
    [​IMG]
    She's a ~20 wk Welsummer pullet. She looks for all the world like a grown up girl. She's had this comb and these wattles for most of a month now, but she's not laying yet (grrrrr).

    She's our Alpha Chicken. She keeps the other girls in line. Here's the thing, though. She's trying to keep me in line too. She's fine if I'm walking around in the run, or with them in the yard, or cleaning the coop etc etc. She's always got an eye on me, but no random attacks. However, if I pick her up (which takes some doing, mind you), she'll struggle and try to peck me. None of my other girls do this. And if I pick up another girl (protesting, of course), Sarah will try to peck my hands when I get low enough to release the other girl. Same thing happens if I'm petting someone and that someone squats (they're so close! Just lay an egg already!)--Sarah comes over to break it up. She's not aggressive to the other chickens at all--just occasional corrective pecks to my two EEs who are attempting a military coup.

    Thoughts? Is this normal for some chickens? I'm not too keen on this protective thing, and would love ideas on how to . . . rebalance our relationship. She'll be a beast if she ever gets broody, and she's not super fun now.
     
  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Treat her the same as a rooster that's trying to be dominant to you. Start off by not allowing her to approach her without your invitation. Start using a specific sound that says you want her. If you don't make that sound and she approaches you, chase her off. When you approach her space, each time walk toward her and make her move away from you. Not necessarily chasing her, just making her yield to you. Act like you're going to walk right through her. If she approaches or moves toward you, chase her a little bit. Shouldn't take much, basically just a stomp and jump in their direction and they'll take off from you. When you want to pick her up, cover her head and eyes. Don't let her come up on you putting another bird down or petting another bird down. Watch your flock, you'll see lower order birds don't approach higher order birds unless invited. Start doing this with her, consistently and calmly.
     
  3. peartreehens

    peartreehens Out Of The Brooder

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    May 10, 2013
    thanks! When I'm working with another bird, can I shoo her off with my hands? Or do I need to use my whole body? thanks again.
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    You can try your hands and see how she responds. If she moves away, great. If she moves toward you or just holds her ground, go with the whole body. Yelling is okay, also [​IMG]
     

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