Blood & Aggression

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by GlennLee, Jun 7, 2016.

  1. GlennLee

    GlennLee Chillin' With My Peeps

    603
    111
    121
    May 13, 2016
    Central New York
    What does normal aggression look like with keets? Mine are 5 weeks old and I keep finding blood in the crate from wounded feet, plus pecking marks in the face, top of head and neck area. I witnessed a fight where one left a puncture wound in the neck of another and have isolated that one, while monitoring the 11 left in that crate.

    Earlier, I pulled 1 injured bird and a day later, added 3 more who appeared to be "calmer" - but now I'm finding blood from an injured foot in that crate as well.

    I have a total of 16 keets - 4 are in an 8 sq ft crate and 11 in a 16 sq ft area, with perches, so I don't think space is the issue.

    Has anyone else had this experience with keets? Any other ideas?
     
  2. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

    4,531
    1,046
    306
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    Are you using a white light or red?
     
  3. GlennLee

    GlennLee Chillin' With My Peeps

    603
    111
    121
    May 13, 2016
    Central New York
    No lights - just ceramic heat bulb.
     
  4. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

    4,531
    1,046
    306
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    Hmmm...

    Rather than just looking for the injured, I would try to isolate the culprit.

    Or, is it possible something in there is cutting the feet? Nails, staples, etc...
     
  5. GlennLee

    GlennLee Chillin' With My Peeps

    603
    111
    121
    May 13, 2016
    Central New York
    Yes, I have pulled out what I think is the main aggressor and am watching the others. No nails or staples to cut the feet. They look like they have been pecked from the top. Is the fighting normal? Beak puncture wounds to the neck, pecking face, eyes and head seem excessive to me. I expected some aggression, but this much, this young doesn't seem right. They are French Guineas - I don't know if that makes a difference. Will keep monitoring the remaining 11 for injuries and plan to move the 4 I pulled back into the larger area. The one, I am keeping isolated and may look for it to go elsewhere.
     
  6. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

    4,531
    1,046
    306
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    I never had that issue with mine. I ordered 30 online and had them in a 3x4 dog kennel, sold 10 around 2 weeks and then had the remaining 20 in a 4x6 area until they took over my front porch until 8 weeks old while I was building their coop. The only squabbling they did was at night when they argued about who got to roost where.

    I do have two guineas that hatched with my two turkeys and they are brooding together. They have been foot peckers pretty much since day one, and it seems like once one starts pecking something everyone else has to join in (they love doing this to my sandals). I would not be surprised if it starts with one harmless peck and suddenly 9 more join in and cause the damage.
     
  7. GlennLee

    GlennLee Chillin' With My Peeps

    603
    111
    121
    May 13, 2016
    Central New York
    Thank you for the insight. That could very well be the case. I have the 15 of them back together again in the two adjoining crates (16 sq feet). I watched them for over an hour. So far, no major aggression like I saw before. The aggressive one is still isolated and I probably won't keep it with the rest of the flock since there are several who are going to have some permanent scarring. Hopefully this will take care of the problem.
     
  8. GlennLee

    GlennLee Chillin' With My Peeps

    603
    111
    121
    May 13, 2016
    Central New York
    I had another round of aggression, but not sure what happened - this morning, two birds look like they were in a heavy weight fight. I'm wondering if they went after each other? Both of the right sides of their faces are VERY puffy and cut up. One's eye is swollen partially shut. I put a bigger feeder in the crates last night and I'm wondering if it crowded them too much. I pulled it out and took out one of the roosts too, just to give them a bit more room. The weather will be warm enough on Wednesday to move them into the coop - still in crates, but I'll be adding another one - 24 square feet for 15 birds at weeks 7 & 8 - then they'll be let out to explore the coop and enclosed run for 4 more weeks - taking them up to 12 weeks when I start to free range them.

    Any words of wisdom on the aggression? I already isolated one bird a week ago and thought that would take care of the problem. Am I missing something or is this normal?
     
  9. ChickenChaser9

    ChickenChaser9 Chillin' With My Peeps

    580
    61
    118
    Feb 3, 2016
    From what I've read bullying and aggression can be environmental in cases where there is not enough food/space and the like but since you are improving in those areas and aggressive behaviors continue I fear you may just have a couple of bullies. This is just the impression I get based on your posts. Observation is key, you need to be able to identify what is triggering this behavior in order to deal with it appropriately.
     
  10. GlennLee

    GlennLee Chillin' With My Peeps

    603
    111
    121
    May 13, 2016
    Central New York
    Thank you for the response. I was able to identify the last bully after first noticing some aggression and then witnessing a fight. It's now isolated and since that one has been pulled, the rest of the flock has seemed to settle down and are all very calm (relatively speaking). I was very surprised by what I saw this morning and am at a loss on what to do next. I'll keep watching for more bullies. I don't like to see the injured birds and am a bit frustrated and stymied by this.
     
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by