Irritable (pecky) chicken at night

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by SusanD, Jun 20, 2016.

  1. SusanD

    SusanD Chillin' With My Peeps

    My Rhode Island Red hen likes to snuggle next to my Welsummer at night. Normally, they seem fine with that arrangement. They also get along well during the day. However, recently, there have been three instances where I saw the Wellsummer peck at Red when she tries to get next to her. I also saw Red peck back once.

    I'm going to check (as best I can) that we don't have red mites, and that neither hen has a injury that might be making them irritable. Can you think of anything else that I might want to check for?
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Sounds like pecking order.
    Just make sure they aren't pecking feathers trying to get more protein.
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Ditto Dat^^^

    The 'Roosttime Rumble' can be full of pecking and squabbling.
     
  4. SusanD

    SusanD Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks. I expect it could be that (pecking order), especially since they don't really have as much space in their coop as would be ideal. I haven't seen them doing any feather picking when dry. I have seen them (especially Red) picking at each others tail feathers when wet after bathing. I wasn't sure whether to attribute that to helping with grooming, curiousity, or serious feather picking. I did think if it were serious feather picking it would probably be going on all the time.

    The other think I noticed that you might be able to give me some insight on is that Red seems somewhat uncomfortable when she goes up at night (standing up, stretching her neck out in different directions, or thrusting her neck forward like she's trying to peck at an invisible insect). She usually takes more time than the other two to settle down. She acts normal during the day. I'm hoping that turns out to be related to having a (normal) full crop and not to a serious issue.
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    She may be pecking at insects that you can't see.......I am amazed at the the tiny insects my birds can see and grab right out of the air.
     

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