Neck injuries to hens- could it be the cockerel?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sophiejw, Sep 3, 2011.

  1. sophiejw

    sophiejw Chillin' With My Peeps

    159
    0
    99
    Jun 2, 2010
    I have an Australorp cockerel who is a year old and massive. He is in with my 16 hens. He's a very busy cockerel, and can sometimes be a little rough with the hens, a few of them have bald bits on their backs, however nothing major and they all seemed happy enough.

    A couple of months ago, I finally managed to get a couple of White Star (small leghorn type) hens. They settled in with the rest happily enough. However on Monday I noticed one of them was looking a little under the weather but nothing in particular so I left her there. The next day she looked really miserable so I caught her and found a nasty wound to the back of her neck. My husband thought it was quite an old wound that had started healing, so I isolated her and she's looking much better now.

    Today I've just had to take the other White Star hen out of the main run as she's got the same horrible wound to the back of her neck and is bleeding so I think it must have just happened. As it's to the back of their necks, I'm wondering if it's the cockerel injuring them. But it seems strange it's just those two injured. Or if it's not him, what else could it be?

    Any thoughts anyone?
     
  2. stoopid

    stoopid Chicken Fairy Godmother

    4,831
    37
    211
    Aug 3, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    Yes. it's probably the boy. Why don't you sit a spell and watch him?
     
  3. Kaeta44

    Kaeta44 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I agree with Stoopid - it probably is the cockerel. Mine grabs hold of the combs or the feathers on the top of the head. Sitting quietly and observing is a good idea if you have the time - you learn a lot about their behaviour that way.

    http://muckycluckers.blogspot.com/
     
  4. sophiejw

    sophiejw Chillin' With My Peeps

    159
    0
    99
    Jun 2, 2010
    Thanks for the replies. I've watched him enough to know he grabs their combs or necks when he wants them. So yes it must be him, I'm just surprised that out of all of the hens it is just the two White Stars who have such awful injuries, none of the others have ever ended up like that. I don't know if it's because they have the large combs so he's grabbing them by the neck more often or if they are more fragile or what to make this happen. I think he must want to leave home- he was crowing at 3am last night too - as if he wasn't in enough trouble already!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by