Beatrice has some issues.

BackyardBon

In the Brooder
Jun 1, 2020
24
30
36
Hello,
I have 5 Rhode Island reds, all about 14 months old. Great layers until recently it looks to me like one bird has reduced her laying and often lays only a fairy egg. This one bird is always digging her way out of the run but is happy to go back in when I approach her. She has the smallest comb, is always the bird in the outskirts while roosting at night, she looks skinnier than the others and now she’s lost quite a few feathers beginning with her head and now her neck. I can’t see any mites anywhere on her. Her vent looks normal no feather loss there, not particular dirty. The other 4 girls have beautiful plumage and I’ve searched them for mites and lice as well with no signs. I’ve done the white paper test in their coop and searched their coop without seeing any bugs. The wild birds and rats do have access to their run.
There is definitely something off with my Beatrice. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you.
 

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nchls school

Crowing
6 Years
Apr 22, 2015
6,891
3,630
386
Tennessee
It sounds to me like Beatrice is being bullied by the other hens. If so, bullying isn't an easy thing to fix other than separating Bea. It always seems that in most flocks bullying is going on. I try to provide "safe" places for those being bullied so that they can get away from the others and eat in peace. It would seem that she is trying to make her own safe place by digging out of the run. Any chance that she could just be allowed to free range?
 

BackyardBon

In the Brooder
Jun 1, 2020
24
30
36
It sounds to me like Beatrice is being bullied by the other hens. If so, bullying isn't an easy thing to fix other than separating Bea. It always seems that in most flocks bullying is going on. I try to provide "safe" places for those being bullied so that they can get away from the others and eat in peace. It would seem that she is trying to make her own safe place by digging out of the run. Any chance that she could just be allowed to free range?
 

BackyardBon

In the Brooder
Jun 1, 2020
24
30
36
Thank you so much for your input. Bullying was my guess too. I do have a safe space I could put her. I would love to let them all free range but there are neighborhood dogs around here that would like to sink their teeth into them. The 5 of them have 150sq feet plus their coop. I am working on expanding their run.
 

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