I'm sick of my bully hens

KDbeads

Songster
10 Years
Aug 20, 2009
1,879
11
161
East Central VA
I have 3 NHR's, 1 mutt and 3 EE's that are all laying. I've been attempting a flock merger with 3 24 week old pullets. At first we had 3 pens, one for the EEs, one for the pullets and one for the rest. Now we have one large complex for them. We did everything by the book basically with extended introductions etc (not my first rodeo with this kind of thing) but we are still having major issues.

At first 2 of the EE's and all 3 NHR's ganged up on my EE pullet, usually 2 or 3 at a time, sometimes more, and would rip her open and generally attempt to kill her. This was not your normal pecking order squabble so I removed her and put her with the silkies. Had to do the same just hours later for the EE/Silkie pullet, leaving the mutt pullet in with the big girls. With the 2 main targets removed pecking order squabbles started with both pens and proceeded fine for a few days. In the silkie pen everything has calmed down really well and it's like a normal flock but over in the complex.... well it's shear mayhem some days.
Everyone except the mutt roo and the mutt hen gang up on the last pullet several times a day but she's big enough and strong enough to get away. When she has gotten away from them the NHR's turn on the EE's and will take them by the necks and fling them around or there will be a 3 on 1 attack. The roo steps in and diffuses it as often as he can but it's horrible to watch.
It's bad enough noise wise for neighbors to start grumbling so I have to figure out something soon. Separating everyone back out is not an option now, I had to use the room the combining created for garden space. There is more than enough space in the complex for these girls, 9 birds in 136 sqft.
I know EE's aren't known for hostility or aggression but what about NHR's? At this point I'm ready to do away with the NHR's, in fact I bought chicks the other day and avoided any reds to replace them and one of the EE's once they get big enough.

Am I one the right track? or have I missed something?
 

richje100

Songster
10 Years
May 20, 2009
103
0
109
UK, Wales
hi,

i had 4 RIR to start, then introduced another 2 along with a white one (my sig pic, forgotten the name of them). all the RIR ganged up on the white one.
i moved her out & she was living in my back garden for a week will i think of something.
off e.b.a.y i bought a pack of 10 beak bits (or bumper bits) & a sirclips pliers.
put the bits on all the RIRs (you have to be agressive to put them on but they dont cause any harm). within 2 days they all got along perfect, in fact she is now the boss hen funnily.
when i was happy that they could all live together i removed the bits.
all the bits do is stop the beak fully closing which stops the feather pulling & biting.
it got that bad that they wouldnt let her eat or drink.

this is one idea which worked for me.

rich
 

babyblue

Songster
10 Years
Sep 23, 2009
697
9
129
when I mixed in new with the old I let them hang together, and at the first sign of agression the nasty one got a water pistal on the face and yelled at. after several days of hangouts the old hens dare not pick on the new chickies and everyone roosts in the coop nicely.

in your case if its warm enough Id use a super soaker or the garden hose. you are the top chicken, you lay down the law on the bullying and pecking order. soon enough your older gals will learn its not any good to pick fights.
 

KDbeads

Songster
10 Years
Aug 20, 2009
1,879
11
161
East Central VA
Actually I stood in there and would grab the offenders up by the feet and do to them what I do to bad roos. Didn't help, just scared the pullets more. If I could stay out there every day for weeks it might help.....
Waterhose test today... hope it works!
 

richje100

Songster
10 Years
May 20, 2009
103
0
109
UK, Wales
Quote:
thats exactly them. email the seller & see if they will post. if i could find mine, id send them on to you. if you go down this orute, you will need the pliers that open as you squeeze, you probably couldnt put these on the birds without it as the plastic is very tough.
 

Dora'smom

Songster
10 Years
Dec 14, 2009
916
11
121
Oregon
My birds have been at each other for some time. I looked at it as a possible protein deficiency, and increased protein without any change in behavior. We got more treats, things to play with, etc. and no change. I had a number of hens who were stripped of feathers on their backs, and one hen who rarely came down from the roost at all, out of fear of the others. The thing that made a difference for us was the pinless peepers. They act as a reverse blinder. They clip with small plastic prongs, into the nostrils, but do not prevent breathing through the nose. The birds can not see directly forward, so they don't pick. It has not changed the basic nature of these birds, but the coop and run have calmed down, and feathers are regrowing. These same birds still occasionally fling their heads and necks at other, more submissive birds, as if they would peck and do damage, but that is all it is, is a gesture. No more damage done.
My Rhode Island Reds are the worst of the bunch. They would eat all the other birds alive if they could. Followed by the Barred Rocks. It's a shame they are such good layers, I would just get rid of them if they weren't. By the way---I used the hose on the pickers/biters, and it never made more than momentary difference in my flock.
 

KDbeads

Songster
10 Years
Aug 20, 2009
1,879
11
161
East Central VA
Yeah, the water hose didn't do any good today
roll.png
I called a rancher friend of mine and her husband has some peepers and bits in the barn. Once he gets back from his trip she have him pull a few out for me. She has no clue where he keeps them or I'd have them already. Have o-ring pliers already, she said that's what he uses to put on the bits. Coool!! Maybe I can get this under wraps later this week.

Though hubby and I made the decision to rehome the NHR's and the worst EE as soon as the BSL chicks we have start laying... 4.5 months or so! He was really aggravated with them today, due to his job right now this is the first day off he's had in 3 weeks so he's just now seeing this mess. After we ate lunch in town he wanted to go by TSC, when we got there he told me to get 6 more chicks. So I now have 4 more BSL pullets and 2 unsexed GLW's, though I'm pretty sure I got girls. All the other chicks the had were reds and BRs...
 

ChickenMama18

Songster
10 Years
Aug 31, 2009
326
3
119
Nor Cal
Quote:
Ok...I'm seeing light at the end of the tunnel...and hope for a change that we might stop our plucker from plucking. Question: How the heck do you put these things on? Anyone have a picture of them attached?
fl.gif
 

MANNA-PRO

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