Beak Trimming


9 Years
Jun 29, 2010
The Lakes Region, NH
I've been thinking of trimming the beaks of my 20-week-old BSLs. They're pecking relentlessly at my EEs, and I thought it might make it a little less painful for them. Are they old enough to be trimmed? Will it be less painful for the EEs when they're pecked?
Most likely. They'll stop over time, though. How long are their beaks? That would help a lot. If not freaky long, it'd just be a waste of time.
I found out when I tried to trim my crossbeak's beak that the blood supply is really close to the end of the beak. She was younger than 20 weeks so maybe that changes as they age, I dunno.
PLEASE don't trim their beaks. It's not particularly humane when they trim beaks of one day old chicks, and is DEFINITELY not humane on adult chickens.

Can you give them more room? That would be your best solution. They likely peck because they are bored.
I read in a post on a similiar situation, the recommendations to use peepers. The owner put the peepers on the aggressors and had significant reduction in the pecking problem.
This is on peepers:
One thing that was pointed out that the beak trimming didn't stop the aggression, and it has to be maintained. I think my chickens would hate me forever- it takes days to be forgiven for wing trimming.
Agree wholeheartedly. Several things will cause feather picking- over-crowding, boredom and protein deficiency are the biggest reasons for this behavior. I think I would make sure none of these apply before even considering... actually, I would never consider de-beaking birds, so I don't know where I was going with that.

Do you have enough space for the birds you have? Standard hens need 2-4 sq ft per bird of coop space and 10 sq ft per bird of run space. Bantams need half that.

Are they getting enough stimulation? Birds get bored, too. Free-ranging is good for alleviating this, but you can add things to their space to keep them occupied.

Have you tried adding some BOSS to their feed, or maybe changing their feed over to a grower formula for a while.

If none of these apply, then I would look into the pinless peepers. Lots of folks on here swear by them. Please consider them before contemplating mutilating your birds, which is what de-beaking amounts to.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
Yeah what CMV said

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