New pullets getting picked on.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by kristalynn, Sep 17, 2013.

  1. kristalynn

    kristalynn In the Brooder

    Jun 17, 2012
    I got three 5 month old pullets on Sunday. My five other hens pick on them a little. Mary was the lowest in the order before, now she is being a bully. She pecks at them and holds on to them until they break away. They spend most of the day on the top nesting box hiding. If they come out she chases and pecks them. She will stand inside watching them and just being a bully.
    I have three feeders and two waterers. They drink and eat when I shush them outside and try n keep Mary away. How long does it usually take for them to civially get along?
  2. newbie32

    newbie32 Songster

    Aug 16, 2013
    Low Desert, CA
    IDK but sounds like Mary is determined to not be at the bottom of the pecking order anymore! I have read on here that people separate the bully hen for a few days and then reintroduce. I don't know if that works or not-I'm still new to this too and am about to introduce new birds after quarantine time. If one of mine is bullying I plan on trying this method.
  3. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Songster

    Aug 4, 2013
    Place them in a separate area at night in the coop, they need to see and hear each other but not touch. Place something like that cheap plastic netting/fencing in the yard for the same reason. After a day or two of that let them mingle. You will have pecking order things but nothing like what you have now.
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I say leave them alone and let them work it out. They won't starve themselves, and she can't guard everything at once. If no blood is being drawn, and you have plenty of space, IMO if you interfere you'll just drag things out. Make sure the pullets have places to hide, things to break line of sight from the older hens and just keep an eye on them.
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana

    I agree. What you are seeing is really normal. It’s chickens being chickens. Let them work it out.

    A mature chicken always outranks an immature chicken in the pecking order. And it is almost always the lowest in the mature flock pecking order that is the brute.

    When will they work it out? When the young ones mature enough to claim their spot in the pecking order. That’s usually when they start to lay or right after. You probably don’t have long to wait.
  6. kristalynn

    kristalynn In the Brooder

    Jun 17, 2012
    Thank you!!!:)
  7. kristalynn

    kristalynn In the Brooder

    Jun 17, 2012
    Well two of the three are laying. They still spend almost all day up in the top nesting box. When they come down to eat and drink Mary my Americauna and
    Blackie my Barred Rock flatten them and peck at them. I block the others out so they can eat and drink in peace sometimes.
    The head hen Henny died two weeks ago. So I think the other two are trying to be the boss.

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