Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by L&Schickens, Jul 14, 2008.

  1. L&Schickens

    L&Schickens Songster

    Jun 9, 2008
    Washington State
    I am so mad! All of my broilers have injuries from pecking. Mostly on their sphincters. It is just disgusting!
    So I separated them out and got a big flake of hay for all the chicks and am hoping that will help. I have 31 chicks in a 12X16 dog kennel and they are still not happy! I almost want to drowned the lot of them and forget chickens all together. It is so frustrating.
    I hope they will get over this. The sad thing is, the chicks that are being picked at so badly ARE ALLOWING IT! They don't even try and move away from the ones doing the pecking. It is making me crazy!
    Why O Why do I love poultry???[​IMG]
  2. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    Can you figure out which one or two are doing the majority of the pecking and isolate them? I wouldn't put hay in there , as it can cause major crop issues if they eat too much of it...
  3. Jenski

    Jenski Songster

    Jun 17, 2008
    Middle Tennessee
    Here are a couple of things I have done to reduce/eliminate pecking in my small suburban flock:

    - watched their interactions and got rid of the troublemaker RIGHT AWAY
    - gave them straw or hay - my girls are older laying hens, and they don't eat the stems, but they LOVE to scratch the flakes apart and knock off the seeds and tiny bits. This is a judgment call, though, and younger chix might not be candidates for this, as arlee suggests.
    - each day I put a "chewie" in their pen ~ something they can peck at and keep occupied. I rotate between whole broccoli stems, cauliflower wedges, cantaloupe wedges, red cabbage wedges, or even field pumpkin halves with the stringy stuff cleaned out. (for-profit operations may try leftover veggies)
    - monitor the amount of personal space each hen has; I wanted to make sure they had room to move around without crawling over each other.
    - provided hiding places for weaker hens. Even an old food stool turned sideways helps.

    Hope that helps ~ nipping cannibalism in the bud is important! Good luck!

    Jen in TN
  4. L&Schickens

    L&Schickens Songster

    Jun 9, 2008
    Washington State
    These chicks are almost 4 weeks old.
    I re-measured the cage they are in and it is 16X16. They have a big dog crate to go into at night and I took that out, as I felt it might be taking up too much room. I gave them some hay and they immediately went to work scratching it all up. I put the injured ones in a separate cage to heal up and medicated the wounds. Then I caught ALL the chicks and dremiled off the points of their beaks. Even the injured ones got dremiled.
    So I think taking the huge dog crate out and the hay, and filing off the beaks should help some. I wish I had another cage for them, but I don't. If the broilers were big enough to butcher, I would be doing them in now so they layers would have more room. But they are not big enough yet.
    I also have more little roos then I want and would be taking care of them too, if they were bigger.
    So, I just thought I would vent my frustration as a newby chicken rancher.
    Thanks for the advice and help.

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