Lil' Red' is odd hen out ; (

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by QuilBillie, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. QuilBillie

    QuilBillie Just Hatched

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    [​IMG]

    I am a newbie chicken owner. I Was raised as a kid on mini-farm, chickens, ducks, goats, horses, pigs etc. but Mom took care of everything, and I guess I didn't pay attention, had too much fun gathering eggs and throwing scratch !

    I recently acquired some property and for the first time in my adult life I can have MY OWN mini-farm. Mom has passed now, so can't ask her questions on how to manage things.

    I have a flock of 7 hens, 1 Barred Rock, 3 Ameracuanas , 1 silver laced Wyandotte, 1 Black Australorp, and 1 Rhode Island Red. All have gotten along OK .... till now. I recently introduced a Rooster to the Hens, he is a silver laced Wyandotte. Everyone seemed to accept him OK except my Lil' Red Rhodie. She IS the smallest, youngest of the hens. I notice now she does not socialize much with the other hens anymore and she has a tendency to hide and keep to herself. She does seem to be eating and drinking, but I've noticed her feathers laying around the coop (not a lot) but enough to notice they ARE hers. I haven't noticed anyone picking on her (in my presence) but she seems afraid of the others. She is not old enough to lay yet (don't think she is anyway) I acquired entire flock (minus the Rooster) from same place, so they all have been together since they were chicks. They are all just under a year old (I think) person I got them from said they would be old enough to lay in about 2-3 months. I've had them for 1 month. The Ameracaunas and Wyandotte are the largest/eldest and have been laying me eggs most every day.

    Should I be concerned for Lil' Red?? Is this just a natural 'pecking' order behavior? Is there anything I can do to help her be 'accepted' and for the others to 'play nice' ? Feel bad for Lil' Red being the 'odd hen out'
     
  2. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have an Ameraucana hen that got picked on quite a bit. She was pretty scared of everything that moved. She was always the last to eat, last out of the coop to range etc. You really can't help but to feel sorry for them. That's just the pecking order though.[​IMG] Everything has since evened out and she's gotten a lot better with time. Things might be a little messed up with the new addition, but it should settle down once everyone is in their place. As long as you don't notice anything serious (blood and stuff) then I wouldn't worry too much. It may just be the roo asserting his dominance as well.
     
  3. QuilBillie

    QuilBillie Just Hatched

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    Thank You [​IMG] I haven't seen anything disturbing (blood/wounds/bald spots) I have provided Lil' Red with her own little hidey hole to escape to, she definatly uses it. Feel so bad for her [​IMG] Hope the others don't pick on her too much when I leave the coop at night after checking on them after work. I give her extra luvs, and fresh sweet hay in her hidey hole (plus some snacks) maybe the others are jealous of her extra attention... but hey they brought it on by picking on her to begin with ! [​IMG]

    Here she is below roost, escaping to her hidey hole, getting pooped on by the other 'meanies'
     
  4. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's a smart move giving her somewhere to get away to. Best of luck to you![​IMG]
     
  5. QuilBillie

    QuilBillie Just Hatched

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    My Lil' Red Rhodie is being seriously tormented by the Rooster ! When checking tonight I couldn't find her ! She wasn't in her hidey hole I provided for her, apparently Rooster got her out of the hidey hole and abused her to the point of a bruised and bloody top of her head (she's just a youngster) found her finally under the ramp door into the coop, squished herself under to escape his abuse! I have totally separated her into her own private suite now, she wasn't even allowed to eat or drink! Is THIS 'normal' behavior? Is there anything I can do? [​IMG] Rooster ( who I'm thinking of naming 'Ike Turner') gets on with the other 6 hens just fine. If I keep her separated till she grows bigger will she be able to stand her own? Or should I think about re-homing "Tina" (Lil' Red)
     
  6. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a feeling that it might have been the roo. There's really a limited number of things you could do. Best case scenario, you could find somewhere to keep her until she's a little bigger and hope for the best. If it was me, I would consider re homing the roo. Your little hen was there first after all. He sounds like he may be a little rough, to make a hen bleed. And he may be picking on her because she's small as well. If you do separate her maybe stick a hen or two in with her for some company.
     
  7. QuilBillie

    QuilBillie Just Hatched

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    wish they could all just get along ! [​IMG] I think I will keep her (with a buddy or two) separated give her time to grow, and see if 'mixing' it up will help, maybe pairing her with Roo's favorite will make them buddies and her more 'likable' in Roos eyes. Really wanted THIS Roo as he is a perfect match with my Wyandotte , really wanted them to make some Wyandotte chicks! If he doesn't chill out, he'll just have to go [​IMG] Thanks for your advice.
     
  8. Ponyfeather

    Ponyfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    And this is why Tofu is pretty much mine, and she lives alone. You are going to want to separate her out get her healed up, because the other hens might pick at her wounds. This could resolve it self once she is healed and older. I am guessing this is most likely happening because she doesn't want to mate with him because she isn't old enough to make eggs. He doesn't know the mean of 'no' if he is young as the hens would kind of explain this. If he is older then he is just a jerk and you might want to find another rooster after your little red starts laying eggs.

    Good luck healing up your little girl. She might be perfectly happy alone, Tofu is. Just make sure to spend time with her. Or after she is healed up keep her with same sized buddies or those she seems to get along with best.
     
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  9. QuilBillie

    QuilBillie Just Hatched

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    Thanks Ponyfeather, Lil'Red does get extra attention (just made her oatmeal b-fast cooling on the stove) My Roo IS very young, older hens stand up to him , Lil' Red just RUNS , then he catches her and pins her down ! Hopefully his behavior will improve, just going to have to juggle space and keep them separate for now. Hopefully as she gets bigger and fills out she can be integrated back into the flock. Poor kid.
     
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