Neurotic Chicken Behavior Thread

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by CalgaryFarmer, Aug 9, 2016.

  1. CalgaryFarmer

    CalgaryFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thought I would start a thread on neurotic chicken behaviors.

    One of my hens spends a good portion of the day walking to the poop door going just out side the coop, turning around and walking back inside and hopping into a nesting box, which is about 6 inches from the poop door, turning around, jumping out of the next box and heading to the poop door. It takes probably 10 or 15 seconds to do the complete loop and she does it over and over.

    Any thoughts on why she would do this?
     
  2. chickenneighbor

    chickenneighbor Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think we need more info - how old is she? Has she been laying eggs, or near the age when she may start? Has she had any problems laying before? Does she have any problems pooping? Is there another hen bullying her in the yard? have you recently changed something in the coop, like a nest box?
     
  3. heatherlaw

    heatherlaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If she hasn't laid yet then she may be getting ready to start. They seem to loose their minds for a week or so when they first start laying. However, she could just be weird :) I have a CCL hen who takes 4+ hours to decide where to lay her egg, and heaven forbid you disturb her on the nest. She paces in and out of the coop for a while, finally picks a box, spends 10-15 minutes arranging it "just right" then changes her mind and starts pacing again. This goes on for hours before she finally settles on a nest and lays. If you open the nest box while she's in there the process starts all over again. She does this EVERY SINGLE TIME she lays an egg going on 6 months now. I can always tell she's going to lay that day because I can hear her loudly aranging her nest. I don't know why she does it but it provides plenty of amusement around here. She's always liked things "just so". Chickens are weird.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2016
  4. CalgaryFarmer

    CalgaryFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    She is about 15 months old and I am pretty sure she has been a consistent layer. Not sure is she is laying right now. Could being egg bound explain the behavior?

    There is no bullying going on. Nothing has changed. She gets in the nest box she scratches all of the pine shavings out,
     
  5. CalgaryFarmer

    CalgaryFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Heatherlaw, mine has a very similar behavior. As far as I know it just recently started.

    I have found some eggs under the roosting bars so is suspect she bay be laying at night.
     
  6. heatherlaw

    heatherlaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You could check to see if she is egg bound. Give her a head to toe check to see if there is anything that doesn't look right. Feel her crop, chest, belly, and around her vent. Look at her vent, if it's moist and large she's laying, if it looks small and tight she's probably stopped. If everything seems normal I'd chalk it up to her just being peculiar and not worry too much unless you see something abnormal. When my hen started this behavior I checked her out but couldn't find anything. She's been healthy and has moved up to head hen so I'm not worried about it. Just a personality thing I guess. OCD anyone?
     
  7. heatherlaw

    heatherlaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If she is egg bound you should be able to feel the egg. Gently feel her belly just below the vent. She may also be walking like a penguin due to the discomfort. If you think she is eggbound I can tell you how to treat. I just went through that with one of mine due to a calcium deficiency. She has oyster shell but doesn't like it. Now I hide calcium in her treats.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Give her a full exam to rule out egg bound, abdominal swelling, bugs, etc.
    She may be thinking of going broody.
    Are you sure the eggs under the roost are hers?
     
  9. CalgaryFarmer

    CalgaryFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    No. I am not sure they are hers.

    I assume because her behavior has changed and suddenly I have eggs under the roost that they are hers.

    Thanks for the suggestions.
     

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