1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!


Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Goose loose, Apr 9, 2017.

  1. Goose loose

    Goose loose In the Brooder

    Apr 9, 2017
    Hello, im brand new to all of this, but I have come to this place often to seek answers for some of my flock problems. I seem to be having one again. I hope this is a good place to ask, but I have this flock of female chickens. All seemed fine, I had a couple of roosters with them also. Well, after awhile the hens attacked and killed all my roosters, and then they started attacking each other. After a while, they stopped. They behaved all winter and now they're attacking each other. I can not seem to find one chicken doing it, I fear its most of the chickens attacking each other. Already I have had one death, a chicken with its tail feathers plucked out, and another one with a wound at the base of her tail. I do not know what to do. I searched everywhere for clues or answers, but found the same results. Cannibalism, over crowded, boredom, and having to much light (I have never ever heard of that, and I have raised chickens all my life) (I know about not having enough light and effecting the egg laying, but never to much light) What could I do?

  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Flockless Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Hi and welcome to BYC - thanks for joining us. You do seem to have an issue on your plate, for sure. This link may help - http://articles.extension.org/pages...nibalism-in-small-and-backyard-poultry-flocks

    I'd say that if you research has brought you to the same conclusions, then you need to address the causes. It's likely that one intervention will not fix the issue, but more likely a suite of interventions. If your flock has become habituated to this kind of behaviour, then breaking the cycle may not be easy.

    Good luck
  3. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    G’Day from down under Goose loose [​IMG] Welcome!

    Sorry that I am not going to be of much assistance but I just wondered if you had actually seen the chickens doing this? I ask because I read a thread here on BYC where the OP thought that her rooster had killed one of her hens and she was all beaten up in the run in broad daylight and he was covered in blood. A couple of days later he turned up dead, having also been beaten up. It was not her rooster doing the killing but something getting into the run and attacking the chickens; sorry, I can't remember what it was. Anyways, just wondering if that is a possibility. Also, if you throw in that they behaved all winter but have now started again, whatever is doing the killing may have been in hibernation and has now come back to it's old hunting grounds?
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  4. Goose loose

    Goose loose In the Brooder

    Apr 9, 2017
    No, I do not think something else is killing/hurting them. They are in a chicken coop with a fenced outside. They are not free range.
  5. Goose loose

    Goose loose In the Brooder

    Apr 9, 2017
    Its been happening over night, but with my coop, im doubting that something is coming in.
  6. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    If the hens killed your rooster, did you find blood on any of them? Then they killed a second rooster?. Seems to be either the roosters were very young or outnumbered by your hens. OR they possibly tried to protect the hens and got killed by a predator.

    You need to spend time observing your birds from a position where they can't see YOU. Or set up a game cam so it can record what is really going on.
  7. SewCluck

    SewCluck Chirping

    Jun 6, 2016
    Yucaipa, CA
    Predators can sometimes find their way into coops and runs. Roosters and hens get hurt or killed even if they aren't free ranging. Since it is only happening at night and you say the chickens "behaved" during winter. I am guessing something is getting into your coop at night that might have been hibernating in winter. Either way, I agree with observing your chickens. Might need to pull an all-nighter and keep watch. I hope you find the answer! :)
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2017

  8. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Greetings and [​IMG]! Pleased you joined our flock! I am also wondering if something is getting in after dark. Chickens get pretty docile in the dark so I don't think they would be beating up on each other in the dark. Sure hop you find the culprit. Best wishes and thanks for joining BYC!! [​IMG]
  9. ninjawesome

    ninjawesome Currently being awesome Premium Member

    Jun 4, 2015
    Wild, Wild West
    [​IMG]Hi there and [​IMG] ! We're glad you could join the flock!

    Oh no! Looks like you have something a little bit more stealthy than a chicken lurking around the coop. Hmm...I have heard of and seen chickens plucking out each other's tail feathers - and it's a sad sight. But hens killing multiple roosters? Unless they are very outnumbered, that would be very unlikely. That makes me very suspicious of a coon or something smart enough to get in without leaving any mark. If it is just the chickens, I've heard giving them toys and room to play with will relieve boredom, therefore relieving cannibalism. Anyways, I'd recommend you set up a game camera to get to the bottom of this culprit. Hope this helps!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by