homemade anti pecking ointment for cooped up birds

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by parmesan, Jan 4, 2010.

  1. parmesan

    parmesan In the Brooder

    Aug 5, 2009
    hey guys,
    With the birds being cooped up more due to the weather, I've noticed one being pecked almost bald, not bleeding but I can see it going there. I've heard of a mustard paste being put on eggs that were being eaten. Would this work on a bird's head?

    Should I hang things in the coop to entertain them more? The coop is like 5'x4' for 4 hens and a rooster which in retrospect is probably too small when they're stuck inside...Should I put them out into the yard to run around even though its freezing or snowing? I know they have instincts, I just don't want to see my favorite hen getting hurt. This is a new thing by the way, in the past 2 days...
  2. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    I always open the pophole door (unless it's below zero) and allow them to go out if they like; I have my coop in a covered run.

    You might consider hanging things from the ceiling, as you mentiond. Things like a head of cabbage (or half of one since you only have a few) stuck into a suet feeder keeps them busy; or, consider a Purina Flock Block. It's great for just this purpose!

  3. kipper

    kipper Songster

    Our chickens love califlower hung by a rope, chicken pinata!
  4. HennyJenny

    HennyJenny Songster

    Dec 26, 2009
    Bennington, NE
    It sounds ridiculous - but I used vicks vapo rub in a pinch during a blizzard - the girls found it so offensive they left the victim alone (I did also employ the food as entertainment plan also)
  5. parmesan

    parmesan In the Brooder

    Aug 5, 2009
    I got a hold of her and rubbed some bag balm on her head. She kind of freaked out and tried to scratch it off. We'll see in the morning.
    I was just reading robert plamondon's site and now that I think of it, this only started when they were inside so much. He is an advocate of the open air coop which last week I would have disagreed with...I think that by sheltering them from the cold so much I am doing them more harm than good. I plexi glass-ed their windows and attatched insulation foam to the outside of the coop and I noticed condensation building up on the plexi. This could be the cause of the frostbite according to what I've been reading. So not only are they messing with one another, they are getting frostbite as well! I'm having a hard time with the babying aspect of this. Evolution has allowed them to thrive without us slathering them with various jellys, right? I'm starting to think I should take off the insulation and open a window...
    What are your beliefs/experiences in this matter? You all have more experience than I do.

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