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chick pecking - problem escalating

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by cottagechick, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. cottagechick

    cottagechick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 11, 2011
    Cottage Grove, Oregon
    I was keeping my little bantam polish away from the unexpected EE and Red Star because her head was getting pecked. So I was keeping a couple of chicks with her and moving the chicks around so that different chicks are together but never the polish with the big kids. Now my little white bantam Wyandotte has a spot where she is being pecked on her back so I am keeping her away from the bullies too. Is it just the white feathers poking through that is making them peck? I still have a bantam barred rock and two partridge silkies that I can put with them, are they safe from pecking because they don't have as much white? Or should I just give up and get new homes for the big kids???
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2011
  2. GardenState38

    GardenState38 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2011
    I'm no expert, but why are you rotating the chicks that are with the polish?
    Every time you do that, it seems to me, a new pecking order has to be established.
    Why not just keep the polish and white wyandotte together --the two that are getting picked on--and let them gain their own confidence outside the bunch of bullies?
  3. cottagechick

    cottagechick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 11, 2011
    Cottage Grove, Oregon
    Quote:The only two that I have seen pecking her are the lf. I don't think the spot on her head is eye level with the bantams. When she is with the bantams she heals up. When I tried to put her back with the lf she got pecked again. I am a newbie..but it doesn't seem like a "pecking order issue" but rather a wow that looks interesting I am going to peck it to check it out issue. I think that is why the wyandotte started getting pecked...it was her (pin feathers?) poking out and they just looked different and got pecked. The place on the Polishes head had pin feathers too. The Polish doesn't seem shy or cowed at all. In fact she tends to peck the others beaks alot. . I could be off base, she is just miserable by herself so I try to keep her with those that don't peck her. so right now I have the bantams by themselves and the two lf by themselves. Part of moving her with different people was so that I could see who was pecking.
    Part of it was to have them all be used to each other. I was hoping to be able to reintegrate at some point. If I notice pecking within the bantams I will separate further. Unless someone smarter than me tells me I am making a mistake....
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2011
  4. Eris

    Eris Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 15, 2011
    El Paso, Texas
    I also realized I have this problem today. In my case, I think its pecking two little chicks backs. They also are going the feathers there too. I'm hoping you find an answer.
  5. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Pecking is a bad thing, no doubt. It's causes are often related to over crowding, boredom and yes, pecking order issues. Chickens go after a wounded one. While some try to make chickens cuddly and all that, they remain, for the most part, cannibals and dinosaurs and we, their keepers, need to better understand their temperaments.

    Bright, white light is also a factor. If the chicken can see well, it picks. It the light is darker, or redder, this seems to help. Being outside with room to avoid each other also helps. Not forcing them all to feed shoulder to shoulder around a small feeder also helps tone down the rough stuff. Having adequate roosts, where the bars are all the same height prevents superiority issues.

    Hope some or all of these things help.

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