Mob behavior...why do they attack?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by DDRanch, Jul 27, 2008.

  1. DDRanch

    DDRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2008
    California
    I have been having a problem with my wyandottes, about 5 of them chasing down and attacking my smallest buff orphington. The buff does not come out of the coop into the pen or to free range anymore because everytime she does, a couple of the wyandottes will go after her, pin her down, and then the other wyandottes join in. They chase, and then jump on her and peck her. 5 at a time. Her little cries are so pitiful. When I witness this, I intervene of course, grab up the buff and rescue her. Sometimes she gets away by herself, runs into the coop and hops on the roost.

    I have put extra feed and water in the area of the coop she stays all day so ensure she getting enough to eat and several times a day I will go up and sit with her outside.............but this is no life for her.

    What's going on here? All these chickens just turned one year old and have been raised together. Why now? And what can I do? My sweet little flock is turning nasty. The Delawares, buffs, and 4 older girls don't have a problem with this little buff...it's just the wyandottes, the silvers are the worst.[​IMG]

    Anne
     
  2. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

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    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    She's the lowest chicken in your flock. You can rehome her and hope that she gets a higher status in a new flock, or leave it be and let her be the lowest. If she gets injured, you'll need to separate for sure.
     
  3. DDRanch

    DDRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2008
    California
    Are they likely to kill her? If I rehome her, will they start bullying someone else?

    I have not seen this kind of problem in the 5 years I have had chickens. Is it the breeds I am keeping, something I am doing wrong, or just the way it is?

    Anne
     
  4. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    6,583
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    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    They could kill her from what I've read around the board. Try separating her with another hen that's "sympathetic" to her. Maybe if she has time to heal and gain some confidence, she'll be better off with the entire flock.

    The other thing to watch is if one chicken always starts the mobs. If so, that hen may be the one that gets rehomed.
     
  5. DDRanch

    DDRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2008
    California
    You know, I thought about that and I do know the silver who starts it. I started noticing this behavior just after one of my older girls, and high up in flock order, died. I thought at first everyone was re-jocking for position, but this seems to be going on too long now.

    Appreciate your response.

    Anne
     

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