Fighting Hens

MKStein

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 10, 2014
1
0
7
I have had four chickens for 3 years now and 2 of them just started fighting. I don't know why but my small Ameraucana just started pecking at the other Ameraucana. The other chickens are not attacked or attacking. They just carry on. They have never fought before. Why are they fighting and how can I get them to stop?
 

LRH97

Crowing
8 Years
Jul 29, 2013
1,136
474
251
Southern Illinois
Chickens pecking each other is quite common. Mine do it all the time, especially at roosting time when someone might fly up on a roost (which some hens must find insulting because I've seen my girls get whapped pretty hard before!
smile.png
). As long as there are no serious injuries (i.e. blood drawn) then it's just probably normal assertion of dominance.
 

centrarchid

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Sep 19, 2009
27,011
20,545
926
Holts Summit, Missouri
I have had four chickens for 3 years now and 2 of them just started fighting. I don't know why but my small[COLOR=660099] [/COLOR]Ameraucana just started pecking at the other Ameraucana. The other chickens are not attacked or attacking. They just carry on. They have never fought before. Why are they fighting and how can I get them to stop?


One bird is challenging the existing pecking order and the dominant bird is trying to maintain its higher position. Being top bird has benefits worth fighting for but generally such fights are short lived.
 

bugflipper

Songster
9 Years
Apr 9, 2010
228
23
113
It really depends for me. I take into consideration that the longer daylight hours of spring may be messing with their hormones. I will give them a pass for about a week. If fighting goes on for to long I spray them with the water hose. My view is reestablishment of the pecking order as a new breeding season comes about. At this time it's normal for the older hens to lose some spots and the younger ones to gain a few. Also I look at the manner of pecking. Bugs hopping or flying around are like crack to a hen. They look quite comical out trying to get them. They become single minded in it's pursuit and there may be a fight that stems from that as they were unable to respect each other's space since likely more than one pursued the same bug to start the disagreement.

However if there is anymore than just natural pecking and tizzies then I do cull an aggressive bird. For instance one hen sees another across the way and makes a B line for it and attacks it for no apparent reason. The problem is handled immediately so there is no question of who the offender was. Aggression is a hereditary trait and is unforgivable on my place. I have no use for their mean offspring. I also have no use for them harming the other ones. So the only usefulness is putting them in the pot for my purpose of raising a good healthy flock. that coexists peacefully.
 

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