My Light Sussex hates me!!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Fuffy, Oct 16, 2009.

  1. Fuffy

    Fuffy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 3, 2009
    Jersey, GB
    Hi [​IMG]

    I have a lovely little mixed flock of 7 pullets. They all came from the same breeder and were obviously not handled much. He said they were between 18 and 20 weeks old at the end of July.

    All of them now will eat out of my hand except the Light Sussex. One of them, Angelina, is still a little timid, but she will come up with the rest and pick food off the floor right in front of me.

    The other LS, Isadora, is different: When I approach the run, she turns her back on me. She does not come up to me when I sit down with food. Sometimes, but very rarely, if I throw the mixed corn around, she will come to the periphery and peck a little. But most of the time she just stands there with her back to me.

    If I watch from the house, she seems to be a happy, normally integrated member of the flock. Nobody pecks at her or chases her away from food. She eats well, scratches, preens, snuggles with her sisters, has dust baths and moves normally, but as soon as I go out....

    When I am cleaning out the run she will stay where she is. She may be sitting on a plant and will let me get close enough to touch her (Which I don't!) as I am going about my chores, and then move along so I can clean where she was.

    I can't think of anything else to do, except t be patient, but I would LOVE some ideas, please!!! [​IMG]

    Also I reckon they must be 29 weeks, give or take. An egg would be nice too [​IMG]
  2. evonne

    evonne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 5, 2009
    Las Vegas
    is she maybe the alpha hen? and when you come in it challenges her so she tries the "if you don't see the elephant the elephant wont see you" thing??
  3. Fuffy

    Fuffy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 3, 2009
    Jersey, GB
    Hey evonne

    I think she is more like way down near the bottom of the pecking order. When they are all at the feed bowl, she hunkers down and waits politely for some of the others to finish before she eats.
  4. Fuffy

    Fuffy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 3, 2009
    Jersey, GB

    Now I am sure there is something wrong![​IMG]

    Have managed to catch her (Which in itself tells me she is wrong!!!) and have her in my 'posh' sitting room in a dog crate. She is on newspaper with food and water and has a nice place tosnuggle up in some straw if she wants to. Have covered the whole thing with blankets to make it dark and cosy for her.

    Is there anything else I should do? She is just sitting there looking miserable [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    When I picked her up I thought she was a little on the thin side...
  5. evonne

    evonne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 5, 2009
    Las Vegas
    i don't know enough about chickens yet to help with this... i bet it's heartbreaking though.. poor little girl... is she at least eating and drinking??
  6. rainbowgardens

    rainbowgardens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 19, 2008
    Central Virginia
    I have found my speckled sussex to be less trusting of me than my dominiques were. Maybe it's a breed thing?
  7. SilverStar

    SilverStar Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2009
    I have a Speckled Sussex. Out of all my other hens(about 40 of them), my speckled sussex is the only one that is unfriendly. She hates human contact and runs away or flyes franticaly around the coop when anyone comes in. She has pecked at me before and ran at me. I think maybee it's just the breed. But since She is my only Sussex , i really can't say. Best of luck!!!!
  8. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    Why do you think something is wrong with her? Some chickens are friendly, some aren't--that's just the way it is! If she is not a human-friendly chicken, then of course she is miserable being away from her flock! From her description of her earlier--hanging with flock, dust-bathing, etc... she sounds perfectly normal. I would put her back with the flock and let her just be her chicken self. Trying to approach or grab her is going to make her skittish, she needs to come to you.
  9. herechickchick

    herechickchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2007
    Memphis TN
    I agree with chookchick

    All of the Sussex I have ever had have always been friendly. I have had some terrible Orpingtons and Barred Rocks, which are known to be very sweet. I do not think there is anything wrong with her. Some hens are just not friendly to people. Does she attack you when you come into the pen (unprovoked, not when you are trying to catch or hold her)? If not, then I would say just let her be or find her a new home if her behavior towards you is not something you want to deal with.
  10. Flintrock

    Flintrock Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 1, 2009
    Flint, TX
    My Sussex, Maude Alice, is the most verbal of the group and she comes to me for worms. I can hold her on my knee and stroke her. She is the not at the top of the pecking order, she has quite the appetite. There is not a mean bone in her body. My Buff Orpington, Ozella, is at the bottom of the pecking order. I worried she was not eating enough because she is the lightest of the four girls. I even spent time in the run observing the group. She is not being picked on and she eats whenever she likes, but she is the most fearful of me.

    Don't know if this has anything to do with the behavior of your Sussex, but her not coming to you is not reason to believe she is mean or ill.

    Good luck to you, caring Mom.

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