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Hen getting really aggressive

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by boersmamrs, Nov 16, 2014.

  1. boersmamrs

    boersmamrs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She was a rescue we got this fall. She had some minor aggression issues that I curbed over a short period of time; however since the snowfall she has been falling back into her own ways. The major problem is that all four of the hens are spending most of their time in the coop now. Its been very cold here (Today it is 21 degrees out and windy). She is pecking anyone who even gets close to her and demanding all the roosting space during the day. There is MORE than enough room for everyone to roost during the day to warm their feet and the roosts are at the same height. My coop is 4X8 and is about 4 feet tall. It's not the biggest coop but they all have enough space to scratch around simultaneously. And there is a ladder and a small other level to hang out on above the nesting boxes. It's not exciting in there but it's definitely big enough. I have tried countless times to stop her from attacking the other birds. I have nudged her away, picked her up and forced her to relax before putting her back down, actually tried using my finger to "peck" her to get her to stop.. I am running out of ideas... adding more space to the coop is just not possible anymore as we are deep in winter now. Additionally there is space underneath the coop that is enclosed and snow free. And the usually free range but I attached a roof to the outside space and connected it to the sauna which is to the side of the coop door. And I put a wall on the other side to keep out wind. There is only one open space outside the coop. So the comfortably come outside of the coop. Any suggestions. She is our best layer. Lays almost everyday LARGE eggs even now that it is cold and there are few daylight hours. Plus, I do love her. I don't want to eat her.
     
  2. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Maybe a flock block in the space under the coop would give her something to do?
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. boersmamrs

    boersmamrs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am going to give it a try. I am going to make my own. Have any good recipes? :)
     
  4. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Sorry, no. We buy them either TSC or a local farm/pet store.
     
  5. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    We also hang green leafy veggies or suet and they love it. But those don't last long enough.
     
  6. boersmamrs

    boersmamrs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I made my own treats. Next time I will make sure they are fully cooled before hanging them. The heat and moisture escaping froze my treats!
     
  7. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Oh no. Better luck next time.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    How long have you had her?
    You added her to 3 existing hens?
    Are they all the same age/size?
    Are they all laying?

    Usually it's the single new bird that gets picked on, I was going to suggest isolating her for a couple weeks,
    but if she's was the only new bird introduced to the other two, that scenario has already been played out.
    Some birds are just incorrigibly aggressive, might be why she was available to 'rescue'.

    It may just take time.
    As long as no ones getting bloodied or pinned down and beaten up, just let them work it out.
    The pecking order can appear vicious to us but is par for the course for chickens.
     
  9. boersmamrs

    boersmamrs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The other birds are much smaller than her. One of my other girls is laying but the other two are not. We have had her for two months. She came from a big farm. I think they got rid of her because she is LOUD. Like almost sounds like a rooster lol. I feel as though she is bored because of being in tighter quarters all the time. Thankfully she went out yesterday, ran around and pecked the snow. She needed to get out. She is being much sweeter to everyone today.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2014
  10. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    Glad to hear that.
     

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