Help with sick chickens

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by bugblu98, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. bugblu98

    bugblu98 New Egg

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    Less than a year ago we purchased a home and adopted the new chicks that lived there. We have 2 Roosters and 3 Hens. They are about 9 months old now. Everything was good and the 3 Hens were laying eggs. Then the top Rooster started pulling the feathers out of 2 of the Hens. Their backs were almost bare. In the last two weeks those two hens will not leave their roosts. I haven't even seen them eat or drink. If we pick them up and move them from the roost, they will just hop right back up into the roost. They look terrible with the loss of the feathers (which don't seem to be growing back) and how small they seem to be. We've checked for eggs and they are not laying. Any ideas?
     
  2. BrattishTaz

    BrattishTaz Roo Magnet

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    Your hens are not laying because they are stressed. You don't have enough hens for one roo much less two. (I know I have the same problem. [​IMG] ) You need to get more hens and/or get rid of one or both of the roosters.
     
  3. bugblu98

    bugblu98 New Egg

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    Can we introduce small chicks into an existing flock?
     
  4. BrattishTaz

    BrattishTaz Roo Magnet

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    No. They will most likely kill them. You should wait until the chicks are almost the size of the adults. I have 2 chicks that were almost skinned alive and now recovering and another that didn't make it. Mine were injured by slightly older chick, adults would have killed all 3.
     
  5. NanaJune

    NanaJune Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Are they on their roosts or are they in their nesting boxes? If they are in their nesting boxes, then they are probably broody (they want to hatch chicks). If they are broody, they will not leave their boxes, they will rarely leave to eat or drink, and they will stop laying eggs. If they are on their roosts, then I agree - they are stressed out.

    As to the feather loss, it takes about 6 weeks or more for feathers to grow back after being plucked out or lost.

    I agree you should get rid of one rooster or get more hens. I don't think you need to get rid of both roosters. As to adding younger pullets to your flock, I only add pullets that are old enough to be bred (if you have roosters). If you keep both roosters, I suggest you add at least enough pullets/hens to allow 6 to each rooster. If you get rid of one rooster, then you can add 3 pullets/hens or up to as many as you would like to get eggs from. I have 4 hens to 1 rooster in several of my breeder pens, and they all look fine and have no significant feather loss. However, they are all full-grown hens, not young pullets. Most of the time, I keep 6 hens per rooster in breeder pens.
     
  6. bugblu98

    bugblu98 New Egg

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    I'm not sure I understand the difference between a roost and a next box but they are in their boxes where they lay their eggs. They are not laying but won't leave the boxes. I can get rid of one of the roo's but should I do something else to help them?
     
  7. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    My guess, they are broody. They will not leave the box, except for a quick drink and a bit to eat. I would still get rid of one Rooster. They are bald from the Roosters mating them.
     
  8. NanaJune

    NanaJune Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:They should have a separate place to roost from where they lay their eggs. Where they lay their eggs is a nesting box. They should have a branch or a board or a pole to "roost" on. When they roost in their nesting boxes, you get very messy eggs [​IMG] . Anyway, their being broody is a natural thing. If you want them to hatch eggs, get some fertilized eggs to put under them (it takes three weeks for them to hatch). If you don't want them to hatch eggs, then I suggest you remove them from their boxes daily several times per day. Or if your henhouse has a door (and if they have access to shade and cover elsewhere during the day), I would take them out of the boxes and close the door to the henhouse so they can't get back in during the day. Then, at night, place them on their "roost" - not in their nesting box. However, it is very difficult to break a broody hen from that cycle, so good luck!
     
  9. BrattishTaz

    BrattishTaz Roo Magnet

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    Do they seem angry (growling, fluffing up, biting) when you try to collect eggs or touch the hens? If so they are just broody.


    ....and I forgot to say [​IMG]
     

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