Mean Cochin Hen - Please Help Otherwise She'll be Soup!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MyGirlsNI, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. MyGirlsNI

    MyGirlsNI New Egg

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    Jun 8, 2011
    Hey Everyone -

    I have four girls: 2 Red Stars, 1 Wyandotte, and 1 bantam Cochin (all about a year old). They are all the same age and have been raised together and were just the sweetest of girls. Within the past few months, my Cochin hen has become the devil (and progressively worse). She used to go after your feet once in a while (whereby I would kick her away), but now recently she will come looking for you and will not only charge, but will bite, twist, and pull as hard as her beak can. Very aggressive behavior.

    I HATE having to watch my back when I go into the coop (I have goats too, they don't mind each other). My other three girls are so sweet. The interesting part is she is at the BOTTOM of the pecking order for my girls. They peck her into submission and she abides, never challenging. I can see no other order going on between the other three girls, they are all so sweet to each other. It's like the 3 know that my Cochin is a little brat and they don't like her. I know she went broody a few weeks back, but due to moving cities etc, she hasn't laid in a couple weeks either. Regardless, her chicken nastiness was established pre-move, so I know that's not the reason she is a brat.

    Any advice? We've tried kicking, chasing, smacking her with whatever we can reach to protect ourselves. She only comes at humans. Not the other girls, or the goats!! I've tried to grab her to hold her, but she grabbed my leather glove so hard that I'm sure it would have broke the skin. [​IMG]

    HELP! I'd hate to get rid of her, but this is ridiculous to have to watch my back when going in the pen. She acts like a rooster.

    (Side note, she survived a fox attack...miraculously. But now I'm thinking, ugh, maybe that fox would have done me a favor! [​IMG] I hate to say it, but she is a terrible little tyrant!)
     
  2. Blue

    Blue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow! So sorry about your hen! [​IMG] My bantam cochin is one of the most docile hens I have, but I used to have a bantam cochin roo who became a little ankle attacker. I'm not sure what would've caused this behavior in your hen, but it does sound like she is trying to take some kind of dominant role, which is odd as you mentioned she was at the bottom of the pecking order. If you could do it, adding a rooster might help calm her down, but there could be some other factors at play here. Possibly she knows that she can't get up from the bottom of the pecking order with the other hens in the flock, so she's decided to try and dominate you instead, maybe wrongly seeing you as also a part of the flock and trying to gain a position ahead of you in her perceived pecking order.
     
  3. Heathero617

    Heathero617 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I too have a mean cochin but he's only about 10 or 11 weeks old!! I got them because the kids fell in love but man o day once i finally catch him >he runs like the wind< he pecks the everlovin crap out of me the entire time!! I tell him, "youre supposed to be friendly and docile!!! Now start being friendly and docile!!!" but he just continues to peck me so i dunno maybe he doesnt like my "tone" when I'm correcting him or something?
     
  4. Blue

    Blue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Yeah, that's what I've always read about cochins - friendly and docile. My bantam roo was NOT friendly and docile! He couldn't do any real damage, but it was annoying as heck when he tried to bum rush my heel while he was free ranging (the new one has yet to attack me when out free ranging, but you never know)! I replaced him with a pretty Old English Game Bantam, who then wound up taking his place in the mean department (at least when I go in his coop). [​IMG] Maybe it's a bantam rooster thing? I even had a silkie rooster who ran at my foot once but then gave up and just seemed not to care anymore. [​IMG]

    My bantam cochin hen, however, is very sweet. I've ordered some standard sized cochins (the breeder only did st. run, though, so I know there'll be some roos in there) to come later in the summer, and I'm hoping the big boy roosters are docile. If not, I'm sure they'll be very tasty at least. It's odd that in all the years my family has had chickens, our big roos have always been pretty laid back guys, but I've had two bantam rooster become mean in the span of only a year. I think one of the 2 Quail OEGBs I received from my hatchery order a couple weeks ago may be a rooster (they're feathering in slightly different, one with much more gold on the shoulders and wings than the other), and I'm hoping he has a better temperament than my little red roo, but time will tell, I guess. Right now, he likes to fly up on my hand when I open the brooder door, but he's only 2 weeks old, so he could very well do a complete flip when his hormones get going.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2011
  5. harveyhorses

    harveyhorses Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Don't know if this will help or not. My family always laughs at me because I am alpha (insert critter here) Never stood any nonsense from my horses, CERTAINlY not from my hens. One of my BO girls decided to change things up and came up to me and sort of chest bumped me (I was weeding) and gave me a couple of pecks, I grabbed her by the beak and shook my finger right in her face. She tried again an hour or so later and go the same treatment. She has been 'one of the girls' since then. It might hve been a fluke.
     

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