Molting Chicken (Behaviour & Pecking Order)

ReelFaster

Songster
Feb 16, 2021
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S.Jersey
First time experiencing a molt with chickens. My easter egger started about 4-6 weeks ago and didn't shed too much. However my orphington started about 2 weeks ago and she has lost a lot more and continues to lose, she is a hot looking mess.

Anyways I noticed some changes and different behaviour recently and she seems to have fallen in the pecking order. My youngest (about 6 months old) and newest to the flock (speckled sussex) now seems above her in the pecking order and will peck at her. Which is ironic because it was my buff orpington being the most aggressive and giving her so much trouble when trying to introduce her. Payback, lol?

Is this common? She seems like an outcast and will go off on her own and even sometimes into the coop by herself.
 

DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
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Jul 23, 2018
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When a hen goes through a hard molt it is very uncomfortable and they often separate themselves from the flock, even sleep in a nest box, because they feel vulnerable.
The pecking order is a fluid dynamic. When her molt is over, she will likely resume her higher position in the flock. The SS is taking advantage of the situation to improve her status.
 

ReelFaster

Songster
Feb 16, 2021
155
261
126
S.Jersey
When a hen goes through a hard molt it is very uncomfortable and they often separate themselves from the flock, even sleep in a nest box, because they feel vulnerable.
The pecking order is a fluid dynamic. When her molt is over, she will likely resume her higher position in the flock. The SS is taking advantage of the situation to improve her status.

Thank you so much for the reply and makes perfect sense.
 

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