Hen fight - what do i do now?!?!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickensforever, Dec 27, 2007.

  1. chickensforever

    chickensforever Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 16, 2007
    Bellevue, WA
    I've got three pet hens who are 3 1/2 years old and have always gotten along with each other. This morning, the dominant hen attacked the lowest ranking one, who apparently decided to assert her authority and didn't give in. I broke up the fight and watched what happened, and they fought again. Only the dominant hen had a couple of scratches around her wattles, but I separated them. Now the lowest ranking hen is above the former middle ranking hen. This is so weird, I'm worried there might be a medical problem behind her change in behavior, but everything's fine from what I could tell, and they're both eating/drinking/moving good/etc. The only change recently in their care is I put a heat lamp in the coop, but I've done this every winter with no problems before. I'm really, really worried about my girls. Does anyone have an idea about what's going on?
     
  2. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    If they've been out and about for the summer and are no "cooped up" that might just be enough of a change to mess up the pecking order.

    The heater shouldn't have anything to do with it...
     
  3. Justino

    Justino ♪♫ Rockin' Rooster ♪♫

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    Dec 21, 2007
    KY
    Quote:yup [​IMG]
     
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Let them fight it out. Being cooped up does stress them and the lower one probably wanted to try to take over.
     
  5. chickensforever

    chickensforever Out Of The Brooder

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    1
    31
    Jan 16, 2007
    Bellevue, WA
    They don't go on range during the summer because of predators, but they are in the same spacious run they have lived in their entire lives (minus occassional supervised play outside of their pen). Thanks for the comments, and I guess I should let them try to work it out on their own, like you said. [​IMG]
     
  6. sammi

    sammi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 21, 2007
    Southeast USA
    I think I would just keep an eye that it doesn't get too vicious..
    try to check for any injuries, especially any that draw blood..and clean that up asap, since others will be attracted to the blood and might gang up on the injured one.

    these scuffles are normal from time to time.
     

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