Introducing New Hen = Please help

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by AnnieSantiago, Oct 9, 2014.

  1. AnnieSantiago

    AnnieSantiago Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 13, 2014
    Portland, Oregon
    Five days ago I introduced a new hen, an EE, into my flock of 3.
    The three stooges stick together like glue (2 BR and 1 RSL)
    At first, they attacked the new girl viciously.
    I put her in a separate cage in the run.
    Slowly, over the past few days, I've let her out more and more.

    I'm not sure what is "normal?"

    Right now, for the most part, the 2 BR hens ignore her unless she gets too close to them.
    The little Red SexLink (who WAS bottom of the pecking order) at first would chase her from across the yard.
    Now, she only chases her if the EE gets "into her space" for the most part.
    But she's awfully mean on occasion.

    And, they still won't let her be a part of their little threesome.
    She gets close, they chase her off.

    She's afraid of them.
    I have to push her into the henhouse to sleep if she doesn't get there before they do.

    Should I be keeping the EE in the cage longer?
    Until they ignore her completely?
    Or is this normal behavior?
    How long will this meanness go on?
    Will they ever accept her?

    I feel sorry for the EE.
    She wants to be a part of the flock :(
    She loves it when I go stand in the run.
    She stays close to me, like I"m her mom.
    She knows I'll protect her.
     
  2. TaraBellaBirds

    TaraBellaBirds Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It is usually best to introduce at least 2 birds at once. Since that may not be possible. You might try removing the top hen for a few days, and let the new comer try with just two. If they still seem to fight remove the two BR leaving your lower hen and the newbie. It can take several weeks for a flock to work out pecking order. As long as there is no blood shed it is best to let them work it out on their own. Good luck
     
  3. AnnieSantiago

    AnnieSantiago Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ok.. so just leave them alone?
    I feel so sorry for the EE.
    I just have to stop watching them. lol
     
  4. TaraBellaBirds

    TaraBellaBirds Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Normally yes, but with your girl being on her own she will have a harder time integrating. Is it possible to remove your top hen for a few days? This will throw the pecking order off and allow your new bird a chance to move up. Plus it will keep your BRs from ganging up on the new girl!
     
  5. AnnieSantiago

    AnnieSantiago Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 13, 2014
    Portland, Oregon
    Yes, I could remove her, although she isn't really the problem.
    The problem bird is the lowest one on the pecking order.
    She's just vicious to the new girl.
     
  6. TaraBellaBirds

    TaraBellaBirds Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Your low hen is trying to assert herself, she might feel less threatened without the top bird.
     

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