Love or aggression?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by bobwilkie, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. bobwilkie

    bobwilkie Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 8, 2015
    Fairfield, CA
    I've had my chickens since Jan 1. They used to be skid dish but I acclimated them to me feeding, watering, and cleaning. Last week I started acclimating them to eating from my hand and being picked up. Yesterday I went inside to clean and everyone of them came to me immediately and started pecking at my boots. They started pecking at my fingers while I cleaned their sand in the run. One of the more skid dish ones even jumped on my back while I bent over to scoop some poop. I stood up slowly and she walked up to my shoulder. I looked her way and laughed then she pecked my temple. These are my first ever chickens. Does this sound like a good bonding or are they trying to eat me or scare me away?
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    Chickens are curious creatures, and they peck at things they are curious about. They don't intend to hurt you, but watch your eyes, as they are shiny. (ask me how I know this) If your fingernails or toes are painted red, they will peck them. Some of my hens will peck at any fingernail polish that has sparkle. They will also peck at jewelry.
  3. bobwilkie

    bobwilkie Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 8, 2015
    Fairfield, CA
    I was thinking about that. I told my fiancé the story and she pointed out the large freckle on my temple. I'll bet the hen thought it was food. Most of them doing this are approximately 14 weeks old.
  4. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    It's how chicks investigate their world. Their beaks tell them a lot about things, whether something is edible or not, a lot like human babies who test everything by putting it into their mouths.

    Pecking is also part of their language and how they communicate. Not for nothing is it called the "pecking order". They learn very young that the flock is ranked according to who does the pecking and who gets pecked.

    But please do watch those beaks! New chicken owners fail to realize how quickly a beak can peck an eye or snatch a stud out of your ear!
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016

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