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Bully Hen? poor victim is timid and has stopped laying.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MissAli, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. MissAli

    MissAli In the Brooder

    Apr 27, 2013
    I am seeking advise for my poor EE, Lady, who appears to be the victim of a bit of bullying. She's missing feathers from her lower back/base of her tail. And now she hasn't even laid an egg for over a week. (she used to lay 5 times a week) I have whitnessed over and over again Cleo, one of our RIR, walk over and pluck feathers off of Lady. (poor Lady squaks in pain) I thought at first Cleo was becoming a feather picker, but we have tried a flock block, as well as extra protein in the form or animal meat, and she just plain keeps plucking feathers....but only off of Lady. Poor Lady used to be so friendly but now she cowers when we try to pet her and avoids being touched, especially her back. I am starting to wonder if Lady is becoming stressed since she isn't even laying now. By the way these girls are only about 30 weeks.

    I was wondering if I seperated Cleo from the bunch if it would help re-do the pecking order. Or will she just go right back to picking on poor Lady when I reintroduce her? And if I do seperate her, HOW seperate should she be/not be? I was thinking like a kennel next to or placed inside the run. Or should she be totally removed further away?

    Ideas??? Thanks!

  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    Rep of Ireland
    I would remove Cleo and keep her separate from the flock for at least a week. This should shuffle the pecking order a bit and hopefully bump her down a peg or two. This article also has some tips on dealing with bullying behaviour in chickens: https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bullying-behavior-in-chickens Best of luck!
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013

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