Bullying or sick?

ShanaMcS

Chirping
Apr 29, 2017
54
62
81
Tarpon Springs, FL
My favorite chicken Penny is a hybrid hen, a golden comet. She has been getting bullied lately. I have seen a few chickens peck at her, but I know it's happening more often than I have seen because she has lots of feathers plucked out on the top of her head, and her wings and back. The last couple of days she won't even come down for food. She is just sitting up in her coop on a perch, not being broody, just sitting there all alone and sad. I have also noticed some runny poop and one of them was green and runny. I don't know if this came from her or another one of the birds. I have 5 chickens.
Recently, we created a run for the chickens in order to bring back some of the greenery to our backyard because they ate it all the way down to sand. So now, instead of having free run of the entire back yard, they just have thisthis area. I think it's about 118 sq ft for the five of them to share. I bought Penny a hen apron to cover her back and wings three days ago. She hated it and tried to outrun it. She mildly pecks at it from time to time now but seems to be okay with it, unless that is why she is hiding... Yesterday I took her out of the coop and placed her with the girls and gave them romaine "treats". She tried to eat some but was pecked by two other girls and went running back to the coop. Then, like I said, this morning she didn't come down to eat at all. I made her some scrambled eggs and fresh water and placed them in the coop and she ate them quickly. The hens are on layer pellets and have grit. This is a new brand of layer pellets that we started about a week ago. Could this be stress from restricting their forage area, sickness, bullying? What do you think? I'll attach pictures of Penny and the poop ( but I'm not sure if it's her poop or someone elses.) I use Sweet PDZ in the coop area.
Thank you so much for your help! I love penny so much and I am so worried about her because she has the sweetest and it is just heartbreaking to see her sit all alone by herself.
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azygous

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11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
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coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
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She also appears to be molting. I see pin feathers under her chin and earlobe, and on the wing shoulder. They can be a lot more sensitive during this and tend to stay apart from the other birds more since those new feathers can be sensitive. It can also make them feel a little puny. How many feeders do you have out? Adding one or two may help her have better access to feed.
 

ShanaMcS

Chirping
Apr 29, 2017
54
62
81
Tarpon Springs, FL
I started a thread a short time ago on this same topic. It turned out my hen was being bullied away from the feeders and that was the cause of her runny green poop. I solved the problem by giving her special treatment to protect her from being bullied while she ate in peace and recovered her strength. https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/calling-all-poop-experts-how-would-you-treat-this.1279850/
I can't find that thread. The link isn't working and I tried searching for it... Thank you so much though!
 

ShanaMcS

Chirping
Apr 29, 2017
54
62
81
Tarpon Springs, FL
She also appears to be molting. I see pin feathers under her chin and earlobe, and on the wing shoulder. They can be a lot more sensitive during this and tend to stay apart from the other birds more since those new feathers can be sensitive. It can also make them feel a little puny. How many feeders do you have out? Adding one or two may help her have better access to feed.
Oh goodness, thank you!!! I just thought they were pecking her there! I had no idea she was molting! I just have one feeder out. I'll put out another today for sure! Thank you!
Here's my update: she didn't come down for food again this morning. I checked her crop and it was empty. I took off her cute hen apron that I bought to stop them from pecking her and she went downstairs. Was her pretty little apron making her hide out? Oh my!
I bordered off a part of their run and gave her scrambled eggs, grit and fresh water and a little box to lay in. She just wants out and all the other chickens are lined up facing her wanting to get in (or at least to know what in the world this strange contraption is!) I also saw that the green, runny poop was from a different chicken, not her.
I'll read up on molting. Should I keep her separated do you think?
Thank you so much!!!
 

ShanaMcS

Chirping
Apr 29, 2017
54
62
81
Tarpon Springs, FL
Oh my gosh, I just read about molting and that does sound exactly like what she's been going through!!! Thank you so much!!!! Any more advice on that subject?
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,534
10,930
611
North Florida
I would not separate her, just make sure she has enough room to be as away as she'd like while she goes through it, unless she's getting pecked or bullied badly. Upping the protein in the diet can help with growing feathers, but it takes as long as it takes. Some birds do lose weight during molt, just monitor to make sure it doesn't get too bad, And that she is eating, adding a feeder or two will likely help. Some of them will adjust to the saddles very quickly and go on like normal, some just don't like or accept them as easily. I have one that really could use being in one right now, but no matter how many times I put it on she gets it off. She HATES it and throws a fit. I have others that don't mind them at all. She may be one of those, or it may be making her more uncomfortable due to molt. Some birds will squat more since they have something on their back. When ever I put a bird on the 'other side' either fence or crate, they all seem to think that there MUST be something better 'over there'!
https://www.wideopenpets.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-molting-chickens/
 

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