Can chickens cause THAT much damage?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by mondaychix, Sep 12, 2011.

  1. mondaychix

    mondaychix New Egg

    Sep 12, 2011
    Hello, All,

    I am new to raising chickens, but I love them!

    A little background: I have two Rhode Island Reds (Thelma and Louise), a Welsummer (Jag) and a Buff Orpington (Daisy). I got them all at the same time and they are all 6 months old. They have always gotten along, but my Welsummer, Jag, has always been slightly more dominant than the rest.

    Recently, I was sitting outside with my girls; they were only about 20 feet from me but my view of them was obstructed. Suddenly I heard the most awful squawking, and I ran over to find them all scattering. My BO's right wing was hanging. I picked her up and upon closer inspection, she had an open fracture and about a 1 1/2" laceration to her wing, right at the "wrist." I was unable to stitch, but was able to treat the wound and wrap the wing securely. She is recovering well (thanks to all the wonderful information and advice on BYC!), and even still layed an egg today.

    Basically my question is: can chickens do that kind of damage to each other? It was mid-day, my dog was lying on the patio (he loves the birds, but would have freaked if another animal was in the yard). I was there, too, and no cats or any other dogs around. Also, today I took her outside so she wasn't all "cooped up, and Jag went crazy, trying to attack Daisy, yet she leaves the other two alone and gets along with them well. This is a totally new thing, and we do not have any roosters.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated!

  2. WillieBoy

    WillieBoy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 1, 2010
    It is possible, but not likely. Chickens can be very nasty to each other, i know i work part time at a local chicken farm.In a hen house with a couple hundred hens, they will pick on one bird until the kill it, then proceed to peck away at the dead hen eating the flesh and guts. When outside freeranging, this behavior is seen very little, because they are searching for goodies and aren't bored.I would say in this case the attacker was not a chicken. It could have been one of many predators attacking while our birds were no in clear view, imo...
  3. Dowie

    Dowie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 29, 2011
    I agree, sounds a bit sudden - did you notice any bullying before the incident? I can't see a hen suddenly attacking another hen that violently from out of the blue.
  4. Nonny

    Nonny Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 16, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Sounds like an aerial attack maybe.
  5. mondaychix

    mondaychix New Egg

    Sep 12, 2011

    That's kind of what I was thinking. We do have a lot of Red-tail hawks around, but I have never seen them in our neighborhood as there is just not a lot of open area to facilitate them. I have seen smaller raptors (sharp-shinned, kestrels), but never near my neighborhood. Very strange. I will just be very vigilant from now on when I let the girls out, or just keep them in their tractor. [​IMG]

    Thanks for your input, everyone!


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by