Change in pecking order?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by DianeB, Sep 3, 2009.

  1. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

    592
    3
    141
    Mar 12, 2009
    I three hens that are about 7 months old. My top hen has seemed to stay in power, but my other two have switched places.

    On Monday morning, my smallish red star was gving my very large RIR a hard time as usual. Then, before I knew it, my RIR Laverne flew in the air and attacked Shirley. It was as if she realized that she was much bigger than Shirley and she didn't have to take it anymore. There was some bickering that day and a few very shallow flesh wounds on their combs and wattles. The fighting seems to have subsided the last few days.

    I know that both of them are in perfect health. So, this is not a case of ousting of a sickly bird. Shirley seems to still gets along well with our top hen and is still part of the group.

    Is it possble for a pecking order to be reorganized after it had been originally established?

    DB
     
  2. miss_jayne

    miss_jayne Lady_Jayne

    Jun 26, 2008
    Columbiaville, MI
    sure can. especially if someone whoops someone! [​IMG]
     
  3. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

    592
    3
    141
    Mar 12, 2009
    Yeah! That's true! Poor Shirley was completely whooped!![​IMG]
     
  4. Beed

    Beed Chillin' With My Peeps

    111
    0
    119
    Dec 11, 2008
    Ft. Pierce, Florida
    Good post-I was kind of wondering the same thing about changes in the pecking order. Loretta is alpha chix. She snips at Dolly, pulls out head feathers and won't let her eat. I worry that she is not getting enough nutrition. I give them everything in the world to eat, good for them foods. Loretta has Dolly so freaked out she is scared to eat. I try to separate them for a while but they go crazy after a minute w/ out each other. I have a feeling Dolly is going to snap like Laverne. I kind of wish she would. I am kind of hijacking this thread-sorry. Diane B how long would you say it took for Laverne to kick Shirley butt? Maybe Lenny and Squiggy would have some good advise-hahahaha!
     
  5. DianeB

    DianeB Chillin' With My Peeps

    592
    3
    141
    Mar 12, 2009
    Well, they are about 7 months and she has been picking on Laverne for about 3 of them. I think the difference was that Laverne became much bigger than Shirley and Ethel (our top chicken) is her best friend and backed her up.

    I'm not sure if it will ever change between your two chickens. Laverne does seem to have some gumption. Afterall, she did bite the back of my cat's head when she was 4 weeks old and chased our's and the neighbor's dog. You can tell she was fuming everytime Shirley became a little snappy. I am surprised it took this long for her to get back at Shirley.

    DB
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2009
  6. stacym

    stacym Chillin' With My Peeps

    105
    1
    111
    Jul 21, 2008
    Kennard, Nebraska
    It's funny how pecking orders work. We took one of our hen,Wrangler, to the fair and I was worried that she would lose her number 2 spot. After quarantine she went up to the leader hen and let her know who was boss. Wrangler is slightly larger than the others and has all the makings of a good bully.
    My lowest hen on the totem pole,Nellie, is bullied beyond belief. We go out of our way to keep her out of a confined area with the others. It's going to be interesting come winter when she needs the heat from the rest. It's just that Nellie might be ugly, bald( thanks to the bully hen) but she has such a fantastic personality. Everyone who comes over falls in love with her! My daughter even modified a cat harness to fit her and takes her for walks. Even though it's like walking a cat. You go where she takes you [​IMG]
     
  7. Beed

    Beed Chillin' With My Peeps

    111
    0
    119
    Dec 11, 2008
    Ft. Pierce, Florida
    Thanks guys. Dolly is brave w/ folks who visit. She is very protective of her domain. Fans her tail and like sashays sideways when she doesn't like someone in her space. With Loretta she is a total wimp. I guess that is how it works.

    I have been wanting to get a harness for walking them. A cat harness works huh? Great I will get one.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by