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Grumpy Hen?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by JHek, Sep 19, 2014.

  1. JHek

    JHek Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2014
    Western Australia
    I don't have photos at the moment but one of my hens seems to be a favourite of the roosters. I think she's getting a little too much attention of late as she's missing a few feathers. I've started alternating letting her out to free range alone and with the flock to give her a break.

    I've also noticed that when she ventures out of the coop into the run she's screeching and puffs up her body and sticks her wings out. To me she looks very unhappy and is saying 'back off' but I'd like to know if it could be something else. Tried Google with no luck.
     
  2. JHek

    JHek Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2014
    Western Australia
    [​IMG]
     
  3. krista74

    krista74 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Victoria, Australia.
    Could she be going broody on you?

    When they go broody they will often puff up their feathers like a porcupine, look flat like a pancake, walk around grizzling and screeching, and regularly go back to sit on their nests during the day. Eventually they just refuse to leave their nest altogether. They can also rip out their own feathers, particularly on their undercarriage, - hence the saying "To feather one's nest" - to make their nest nice and soft for their eggs/future chicks.

    If you approach them on the nest, they will make an awful screeching noise at you to warn you off. If you get too close, they may even peck. Does this sound like what you're dealing with?

    - Krista
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2014
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    How old is she?
    Is she laying?
    Have you checked her for lice/mites?
    She might be molting?
     
  5. JHek

    JHek Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2014
    Western Australia
    No mites or lice, she's about a year old now and I believe she's laying (hard to tell with the number of chickens I have). Being broody would make sense with how she's acting but I haven't found her sitting on any eggs when she is in the nesting box.

    She's never been super friendly but normally I can approach her in her box and she might look a little apprehensive but I approached her yesterday and she did exactly that and swung around like she was going to attack me.
     
  6. JHek

    JHek Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 23, 2014
    Western Australia
    Update! Definitely laying and was on an egg when I got home. Also one of my silkies has started acting almost exactly the same! Although she's not pecking anyone who gets too close.
     

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