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Chickens pecking eachother

Discussion in 'Nutrition - Sponsored by Purina Poultry' started by mavis4, Mar 2, 2016.

  1. mavis4

    mavis4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Hi, I got my hens in the summer sometime and recently ( past 2 months ) they have all been pecking eachother. They are as bad as eachother. 3 out of 4 have bald patches now and I'll attack the pictures of the worse one. We also have a light Sussex who dosnt have any bald patches however I have seen her get pecked before. What shall I do? [​IMG][/IMG][/IMG]
     
  2. nchls school

    nchls school Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pecking each other is pretty much normal, but when they're tearing feathers out of each other that's not normal. If they are eating the feathers they may be lacking in calcium. At times this happens because of crowding, but that seems unlikely if you have just the four birds. Feather plucking can become habitual and be really hard to stop. Are they free range? Sometimes, with more room, the plucking is reduced.
     
  3. MorganC

    MorganC Out Of The Brooder

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    Pecking can also be from establishing the pecking order or a slight change in it. Sometimes stress can cause pecking issues and/or a change in that order. Changes in feed can cause behavioral changes or even slight changes in water, like going from city water to well water.
    Another element that could cause pecking is 'bad vibes.' Each living organism has a 'vibe' so to speak, and if some of the other birds feel a bird's vibe has changed (whether be from health/disease/attitude) they may feel like they have to 'rid the flock' of these vibes and if left without being addressed, other birds may kill the lesser(s) among them. It's kinda a complicated subject but that's the just of it.
     
  4. BBQJOE

    BBQJOE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Void where prohibited.
    Are they just plucking, or are they eating them as well?
    If they are eating them, It's good sign they need more protein, not calcium.
     
  5. DrPatrickBiggs

    DrPatrickBiggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A sudden turn toward aggression is likely due to a stress event. Has something changed in the environment around their coop? Excess noise? A pet? A neighbor's pet? Do you have a predator problem? Is something visiting at night and tormenting your birds? Aggressive pecking in an established flock is triggered by stress. Are they too hot? Are they too crowded? Have you changed feeds recently? Your best option is to try and determine what may have changed to cause these birds to turn on each other. You can provide some enrichment items to try and redirect their aggression. Try Purina Flock Block. This product encourages the natural pecking behavior of the birds, and it is better that they peck at a block of feed instead of each other. Provide a head of cabbage or a watermelon or a pumpkin for the hens to pick at. Determining the cause of the change in behavior is going to be key to stopping the problem.
     

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