Help! Agressive hen!

Keziah

Songster
Sep 25, 2017
121
172
141
Hello, my RIR hen is a very sweet hen who we have as a pet. She was hand fed as a chick because she couldnt eat on her own, so she is very kind and lets us hold and pet her all the time. But recently, every now and then, she gets super agressive and attacks us like a rooster would. This morning my sister went out to get the eggs and she attacked her. She has scratches up her arm and leg. Can someone please help us? How can we get her to stop doing this? And why is she doing it?
 

Keziah

Songster
Sep 25, 2017
121
172
141
Hi, she is 3 years old, and she is free ranging when she usually attacks. She is not broody. Hope this helps
 

centrarchid

Crossing the Road
11 Years
Sep 19, 2009
26,385
17,757
856
Holts Summit, Missouri
The behavior has been developed through unintentional training. It is OK to hand feed them at any life-stage, but care must be taken not to reward attacks with food. You are seeing what I call feed bucket aggression. See link below where it discusses behavior in terms of roosters, but hens will do the same.

https://www.backyardchickens.com/ar...hicken-directed-at-humans-man-fighting.75750/

I have a broody and two post broody hens exhibiting the same behavior. They will be broke of it before start of next broody cycle.
 

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