How does one discipline a biting pullet?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by thndrdancr, Jan 21, 2008.

  1. thndrdancr

    thndrdancr Songster

    Mar 30, 2007
    Belleville, Kansas
    Well, this behavior has escalated lately and I have not a clue what to do about it.

    Lily and I are having a battle of wills. She will peck me, then I will gently hold her down when she does it. Thats the only thing I have read here that might impress them that I am top hen?

    I dunno, at first I didnt do anything, thought it was perhaps accidental when she thought I had food or something, but its becoming quite clear she does it just because ..well whyever. I have no idea why she does it, this behavior stumps me as none of my others have ever pecked me out of meanness. Then lately I have started holding her down for about a 30 seconds, then I let her go, she jumps up and pecks again, and its NOT lightly. I do NOT want to encourage this behavior at all.

    Any ideas? I always thought if I had a hen that was mean and pecked like that, I would get rid of her, but poor Dash would be heartbroken, so suggestions please. I cant have her around my 2 year old niece at all if she is like this.

    I have been giving her lots of lovin, but it could still be attention getting behavior I guess, do I fix this?
  2. Scrambled Egg

    Scrambled Egg Flock Mistress

    Aug 29, 2007
    Fayetteville, NC
    I am sure Purple Chicken will have some advice to offer for this situation, lol!!!
  3. thndrdancr

    thndrdancr Songster

    Mar 30, 2007
    Belleville, Kansas
    Well, I am sure he will, but he is the equivalent of a roo and I am the equivalent of a hen... [​IMG]
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    this is just an off the wall thought (because otherwise I have no idea what you should do), but I don't suppose it's possible that you are coming into the coop with snow on you and the hen is pecking at *that*?

    Mine do that. I do not know why, I suppose because they don't go outside and it's the chicken version of catching snowflakes on your tongue or something. It is cute yet extremely annoying. But they are bored and thus far have seldom pecked at anything other than snowy parts of me, so I'm letting it go for now.

  5. mdbucks

    mdbucks Cooped Up

    Jul 14, 2007
    EXIT 109 on 95
    apply a boot to the hens backside, increasing the speed that the boot travels each time, till she stops biting, she will learn or end up in the freezer if the boot presure is too much.
  6. carugoman

    carugoman Songster

    Nov 8, 2007
    NW FL Crestview
    I'd say just make chicken and every time!
  7. Smitty's Farm

    Smitty's Farm Songster

    Aug 24, 2007
    St Clair County, Il
    WOW! What kind of breed is Lily and how old is she? I'm sorry you are having head hen battles. What if you scooped her up and held her for a while or is that to dangerous. Is she that aggressive? I have a few EE pullets that peck me relentlessly, but it's for me to pick them up and hold them. Sunshine, one of EE girls just pecks & pecks until she gets her way to be picked up & snuggled. She's spoiled! [​IMG]
  8. slyfoxpeeps

    slyfoxpeeps Songster

    Oct 11, 2007
    Lewisburg, WV
    I have a friend that picks them up and then holds their beak shut for a few seconds and it really seemed to help with one of my more aggresive pullets.
  9. jjthink

    jjthink Crowing

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    I know how painful this can be. Last fall I adopted out (temporarily as it turns out) a lonely roo to someone who had what was thought to be 26 MH pullets (oops, 3 grew up to be roos) as well as 5 gentle older hens. Most if not all of the pullets were vicious, attacking both roo and me, and I'm sure anyone else in their path. Blood everywhere. They were tearing pieces off his comb and eating them! Witches, all of them. I am an unwavering animal lover but I have to admit that I wanted to inflict damage when they bit me so hard it was capable of bringing on a migraine. And more so, because they were hurting my sweet roo, who was far too much the gentleman to hit back. Blood poured down his face into his eyes. It was awful. I found myself pushing them away as they charged me. I felt bad, because it was indelicate - I had to be fast to get them away before the next bite.

    But I wanted to report that things got better when they grew up. Much less vicious, so there is a lot of hope for that pullet you are enduring! Roo is back with me now, accompanied by one of the now hens. She is gentle now, though I had to work with her (holding her and rewarding her witha treat for good, calm behavior) - at first she was fearful and mistrusting. Now she sits in my lap and lets me carry her around. Not even one bite in these last 6 months she's been here.

    Good luck!
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2008
  10. thndrdancr

    thndrdancr Songster

    Mar 30, 2007
    Belleville, Kansas
    Yea, I am not sure what her problem is. She DOES want non stop attention, so it could be becuz she is angry/upset she is not getting enough?

    It all started when Dash would nuzzle me for food, she wouldnt peck, she would just nuzzle. This was from babyhood. I guess Lily thought Dash was pecking and it was ok, so then she started doing it, she was fairly small, so it wasnt quite so painful. I worried about it then, as she was NOT nuzzling, she was actually getting skin and pulling, but it was a "I am hungry, give me food now" thing and she was a bit confused as to the food/my hand.

    NOW there is no confusion whatsoever, she just thinks of my hand as somethin to fight, not sure why. I really want to nip it before egg laying behavior starts, altho she has to be fairly close. [​IMG] My other girls might pick on each other a bit, but they have never pecked me, except by accident when I have food. [​IMG] I consider that diff, as its purely accidental.
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2008

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