I have recently re-homed the rooster of my 7 hen flock. He had been an all around miserable jerk to both my family and the hens. Offenses include attacking my mother and little sister on sight, relentlessly chasing hens to mount them, and stripping the backs and heads of almost all of the girls clean of feathers. While egg production hadn't slowed, I worried about the long term health of the hens. Now that he's gone, none of the hens seem to miss him very much. The flock is generally more peaceful, and the girls still go through their daily routine of dust bathing, perusing the garden beds, and preening. It has been a week, and there has been no bullying among the hens. Pecking order has remained exactly the same, and pin feathers are finally remaining in tact! However, egg production has suddenly dropped by almost half. The weather has not changed significantly. Does the loss of a major flock member automatically cause stress for the hens? Is this chicken stockholm syndrome? Has anyone experienced something similar?