Hen rubbing her beak on cage to the point of injury

Zagreus

Hatching
Jan 16, 2018
5
2
9
Hello
I have two free ranging hens who only go into their run at night to sleep. In the morning one gets very worked up to go outside and has begun running her beak back and forth along the cage. It didn't seem to be an issue (no marks on her beak or damage to the coop) so I just let her, but this morning it seems that she gave herself a gash on the beak from doing it. It's not very deep but I'm worried if I don't stop her she could hurt herself a lot worse but I'm not sure how to begin curbing the behavior. Has anyone else had this issue? How should I stop it? I would get up earlier but I've seen her start doing this at around 4am and while I will certainly make the effort to let her out before she starts getting upset i'm worried about slipping up and her getting hurt because i slept in.
 

Foster's Freehold

Songster
6 Years
Jun 7, 2013
346
458
182
South Central KY
You might want to see if this is self correcting due to pain in running the gash along the wire. Do they have food and water in the coop? I toss a handful of scratch and scuffle it into the litter if it seems I'm going to be late letting them out. Gives them something to do while they wait on me lol. Put treats, toys, interesting things inside the coop.
 

Zagreus

Hatching
Jan 16, 2018
5
2
9
You might want to see if this is self correcting due to pain in running the gash along the wire. Do they have food and water in the coop? I toss a handful of scratch and scuffle it into the litter if it seems I'm going to be late letting them out. Gives them something to do while they wait on me lol. Put treats, toys, interesting things inside the coop.
they have food and water, maybe I could try putting something besides scratch in there since they aren't too interested in it?
 

Foster's Freehold

Songster
6 Years
Jun 7, 2013
346
458
182
South Central KY
Yep, a cantaloupe cubed up, cherry tomatoes, dried meal worms. Chickweed, salad greens, spinach are all good too. Set up higher and lower places, cut a small hole in a pop bottle and put dried meal worms in it. You'll have to sort of show them what it is. But then they can root that bottle around waiting for the meal worm to drop out lol. This works with so many animals, they actually make toys for it.
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
99,075
138,272
1,807
SW Michigan
My Coop
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they have food and water, maybe I could try putting something besides scratch in there since they aren't too interested in it?
Best to have their regular feed ration available at all times that they are awake.
Scratch should be just a 'treat'.
What is your regular feed ration?
How big is their 'cage'?
 

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