I put my EE bully in jail for relentlessly going after an ex-broody. Did I do the right thing?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by nminusyplusm, Oct 16, 2017.

  1. nminusyplusm

    nminusyplusm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 6 pullets: Favaucana is top (a benevolent ruler, rarely enforces using anything other than a side-eye, which works very well), bully EE is 2nd, 2 more EEs in the middle who sometimes join in the mean girl hazing but are usually peaceful and 2 OE Welsummer x Cream Legbar at the bottom.

    The 4x6 Coop is always open to a predator proof 8x10 DL run. Freeranging is out of the question as there's no grass where I live but lots of loose dogs.

    Everyone has been laying for a few weeks except the bully, who just started to sort of squat today (not sure if all this could be exacerbated by hormones).

    Ex-broody OE is a tiny thing (Welsummer x Cream Legbar) and she was second to last in the pecking order, she just got out of the broody breaker where she had to be coaxed into eating with scrambled egg, mealworms, etc.

    Now it's day 2 of freedom for the ex-broody OE and the EE making it her mission in life to attack her. I'd rather let them sort it out in the run but EE is also preventing ex-broody from eating no matter how many feeders I put in different areas in the coop and run.

    I was concerned that little ex-broody wouldn't be able to gain some weight with EE chasing her constantly, pecking (no blood though) so, fed up with EE torturing her, I put EE in the broody breaker turned jail for a time out (a couple days?). It's a 3' x 2.5' rabbit cage (with food and water) in the coop.

    Now everyone but EE is happily scratching in the run, minding her own business, and EE is miserable "upstairs" in her cell in the coop.

    I'm hoping to reset the pecking order. EE bully always went too far with a laser focus on her victims, IMO, but now it's really bad.

    Is this the best way to solve this?
     
  2. Peeps61

    Peeps61 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes. I think you made a great decision. Hormones could be at play, but bad behavior can become habitual, so it's good to nip it in the bud, if you can.

    I'd leave her separated for at least a week.
     
  3. Steve J

    Steve J Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I kicked a barred rock hen out of my flock for being a mating bully. Oh, she's an all around bully anyway, but at least then the other hens can flee. She attacks them when the rooster mates and goes after their heads as hard as she can. I've had her loose all summer and gave her chance after chance, yet she always reverts to her aggressive ways within a day or so. She's just loose now and roosts in a shed. She seems happy and wanders all over so she's my free range hen!
     
  4. nminusyplusm

    nminusyplusm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you! We'll see how it goes and I'll post updates.
     
    ButtonquailGirl14 likes this.
  5. nminusyplusm

    nminusyplusm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yikes! Mine better straighten out because I don't have any possible alternative living quarters for her.
     
    ButtonquailGirl14 likes this.
  6. Smuvers Farm

    Smuvers Farm Melvin Up the Taterhole Premium Member

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    x2!!! Absolutely the right decision. Break her butt from that bad bully behaviour (say THAT 10 times fast!!). The pecking order will rearrange a bit, I'm sure, and when you let bully butt loose, she'll be better mannered.
     
  7. nminusyplusm

    nminusyplusm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Will do! I'm going to follow Peeps61's advice and let her chill longer.
     
  8. Sara Ranch

    Sara Ranch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a cockerel and his two older girls become bullies to the flock they were with. They wouldn't change their behavior, even if I was around.

    I moved all three to another flock with less desirable real estate. They were the three newcomers. The new flock accepted them, but in no way would they allow any of the bully behavior.

    The three bullies begged for two weeks to go back to their flock. I explained why the answer was no.

    The old flock is SO much happier now!!! Well worth it, in my opinion.

    I know you can't do that. Try the separation. When she rejoins the flock, watch her carefully. She will be angry and a bit out of sorts. I hope the time out works!
     
  9. ChattyChickens4Life

    ChattyChickens4Life OCD (Obsessive Chicken Disorder) Premium Member

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    Absolutely the right decision! A few pecks in the flock here and there is all right- It's natural. But relentlessly bullying another chicken is not ok! You did the right thing!

    -Chatty :)
     
  10. nminusyplusm

    nminusyplusm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you all for your wisdom and input, this first timer sure appreciates the help!
     

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