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Is my sweet hen a "loner" or "delicate"?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by My1stChickens, Oct 28, 2015.

  1. My1stChickens

    My1stChickens In the Brooder

    May 16, 2015
    I have a small flock of 11 of chickens. Most were purchased as tiny babies in April, but 3 grown hens were integrated in August (after quarantine). It's a mixed group; 3 cream legbars, 3 americaunas, 1 RIR and one that was supposed to be Sicilian Buttercup but has muffs, so I think EE.

    One Americauna "pullet" has a habit of crowing, but the rest are laying eggs now. I've noticed that the Buttercup/EE tends to stick to herself a lot. She is not high on the pecking order, and if challenged does not fight back. The Americaunas are not high on the pecking order either, but are much more flighty. The act like drama queens compared to the ladylike little hen.

    I figured this was just her personality, but now she has been the "canary" of my flock twice. The first time, she was the first one to be hunkered down, sleeping and lethargic-- and it turned out they all got fowl pox. A few days ago, she was puffed up and sleepy, and I'm now treating everyone for coccidiosis. I babied her inside for a few nights, as she was quiet and barely eating. She seems okay now.... none of the others have shown the slightest issue. This makes me wonder if she is "delicate" or more susceptible to things.

    Is she just a loner and it's a fluke that she's been sick first? Is "loner" a personality type of some hens? Or is she more delicate than the others? Anything I should check for or do to keep her well and strong? Or am I overthinking this?

  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    You are not overthinking things - there is a strong possibility that she is a loner and also more inherently susceptible to health issues. Just like all animals (humans included) genetics plays a large role in disease resistance. I'd be curious to see a picture of your crowing 'hen'.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Chickens are great about sensing weakness and weeding it from the flock. Sounds like she's just not as thrifty as the other birds, and they know it. They don't have compassion as humans do for the weak or ill, they exclude them. I'm not sure there's anything you can do for her, except be glad she's giving you a head's up on what's coming down the line for the flock.

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