Chicken with a grudge?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ernie85017, Dec 4, 2014.

  1. ernie85017

    ernie85017 Songster

    Jun 24, 2012
    I have 7 girls, the two large ones have been the dominant hens. They can be downright mean!

    Violet and Lily came together when I got them, and always slept together on the perch. Lily has been higher in the pecking order than Violet.

    The other 3 are at the bottom of the pecking order.

    Violet suddenly, about 4 days ago, became aggressive and her aggression has a specific target - Vernie, one of the three at the bottom of the pecking order. She goes out of her way to attack her. Only Vernie, no one else. I will find her, and others, up on the perch to escape the turmoil and attacks.

    I noticed in recent weeks that Violet no longer sleeps with her old buddy Lily. Violet has just finished a hard molt, and her behavior was fine during the molt. I thought molt was spelled moult, but spellcheck keeps changing it. Bah.

    I also noticed that Violet is walking around tall, like a rooster, and her tail is spread vertically. What is going on? I never saw anything like this before. She is causing upset in all of the girls and I'd like to get it to stop if possible.

  2. ernie85017

    ernie85017 Songster

    Jun 24, 2012
    Any ideas, anyone?
  3. krista74

    krista74 Songster

    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    Do you have a rooster in your flock at all? If not, it could be that she is assuming the role of flock leader and trying to dominate all the other hens.

    I would separate her from the rest of the flock in an attempt to knock her down a peg or two in the pecking order. Sometimes a 'time out' in a broody-buster cage for a few days is enough to make them rethink their behaviour!

    Good luck!

    - Krista
  4. ernie85017

    ernie85017 Songster

    Jun 24, 2012

    Ha! You think like I do! I put her down on the ground on her back a couple of times to take her down a peg ( like you can do with roosters). She stayed on her back for a good long time before I nudged her to get up. All that accomplished is that she is on her best behavior when I am around, then resumes her reign of terror when I leave. I can hear the squawks and panic. I guess I will have to put her in a cage alone.
    It is only one hen that she is attacking and she is relentless.
    No rooster.
    I saw the cutest little bantam rooster at the feed store today. I have never seen one so small, and he was full grown. Do you think a little rooster would have any calming effect on the girls?
  5. mrchicks

    mrchicks Songster

    Jul 29, 2013
    We have a Marans hen that gets bossy like that. We had tried adding a rooster, she beat the stuffing out of the poor guy so we took her out of the flock for a week. She was the new bird when we put her back, now she's on the bottom of the pecking order. She still hates the rooster, but just gives him the stink eye from the safety of the other side of the coop.

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