Chicks Pecking at Other Chicks' Vent, Tail, Tailfeathers...

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Aeneas, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. Aeneas

    Aeneas New Egg

    Jan 16, 2012
    I noticed this afternoon that two of my 1 week old Buff Orpington chicks were getting their vents, tails and tail feathers pecked at constantly by the other chicks in the brooder (Buff Orpingtons, Red Leghorns and Barred Rocks.) It got to the point where the tail feathers were stripped and the skin was quite bloody. I took the chicks out of the brooder, cleaned them up, isolated them in a box with food and water for a couple hours to let the wound clot and the swelling go down.

    I ran out to TSC, not necessarily in a panic, but hoping to find something that might discourage further pecking and help the wounds heal. I found a spray that was advertised to help treat abrasions and limit discomfort, so I got that and treated them with it. After a couple hours in segregation, I released the chicks back into the brooder. Immediately the chicks went right back to pecking on the affected birds. I caught them again, gave them another spray, and the other chicks started to leave them alone.

    This is my first batch of chicks, so I'm not sure what to do or what the cause of this may be. I'd appreciate any suggestions. Could this be the beginnings of a brooder-wide outbreak of something nasty? Should I be looking to change my management practices?

  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Once the swelling goes down and the area heals, put a little Vicks Vapor Rub on the areas being picked on. That will stop the picking.

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