odd behavior toward us all of a sudden?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Trishkabob, Nov 1, 2011.

  1. Trishkabob

    Trishkabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2010
    Schuylerville, NY
    we have a flock-ette of 3. the oldest one, an SLW, is moulting and has become skittish and scared of us in a way she wasn't before. Also, all 3 have suddenly become indifferent to being called in for treats. I used to shake the sunflower seed jar and they came running and ate eagerly. Now they ignore it and not only do I lose a part of my day I love, sitting quietly with them before work, it is also a drag when we want to pen them (we put them in when we leave our property because our only losses happened when we weren't home).
    They like their pen-go in on their own often to eat, drink, lay, dust bathe, hang out; in other words not chicken prison for them.
    It's like they got spooked-even the one who always jumped up on my lap to get her treats won't do it now.
    I don't think she or the other one are moilting-if so, they are "soft" moults unlike the hard moult the SLW has been going through.
    They are laying well, even with the lower light of the fall (not the moulter) and are exhibiting no other signs of illness or distress. Do they get sick of treats (yikes, talk about spoiled)? They showed more interest in an apple yesterday but still with a great wariness they never had before.
    Am I missing something?
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Did something maybe scare them? Did they eat some seeds that were off so don't want them? Try cracked corn maybe? Or have they associated running for seeds with being penned up? Hard to say really.
     
  3. Trishkabob

    Trishkabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2010
    Schuylerville, NY
    the weird thing is that when they come running for seed, it is usually NOT to be penned up, just, well, "treated". and I don't think they got off seed (woildn't they refuse that?)
    i keep thinking something spooked them that they associate with us (as opposed to being spooked by a predator, for instance).
    It isn't the worst probelm to have, I realize, but it is kind of sad. could it be a moulting thing? (like PMS, as an analogy?)
     
  4. so lucky

    so lucky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Maybe the girl who is molting is just not feeling good--doesn't want to be picked up, etc, and the other two are following her lead.
     
  5. poseygrace

    poseygrace Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have two BLRWs that suddenly became like that after a dog scared them. They won't come to me at all now, and they used to come a-runnin' for treats. Now they linger in the bushes, eyeing me warily. Makes me sad too. I have noticed they both appear to be molting, but I don't know if it's a stress molt from the dog, or they are just doing a regular fall molt. But I wish they'd return to their cheerful old selves!
     
  6. Trishkabob

    Trishkabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2010
    Schuylerville, NY
    poseygrace,
    yeah, funny how much you miss a sweet interaction with them. But today, they seem almost their old selves! as suddenly, as rhey went weird. Lorna, the moulter, is still keeping her distance but at least there is some progress.
    (we have a dog, old and sweet, with whome the girls hang. I think they sense he may be a
    protector from predators? They clear out if he runs. We have the occasional housecat come through...maybe our girls got spooked by that the way yours did from a dog. hmmm, they're not so dumb as some people think...)
    hope yours come around...
     
  7. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    From what I've read, moulting could definitely do this.
     
  8. Trishkabob

    Trishkabob Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 30, 2010
    Schuylerville, NY
    hmm, maybe all 3 are molting to some degree and we have only noticed it in Lorna because it is so much more pronounced. Do you know if molting is stimulated by age or weather/season? It is getting cold fast here and I am watching to see if regrowth is happening, even as feathers drop, in response to temp. changes. Maybe their return to more normal behavior today, though sudden, means the molt has turned, as it were. thanks
     
  9. goldeneggtees

    goldeneggtees Fluffy Butt Nut

    Mar 11, 2009
    Long Island, NY
    my hens are very skittish when molting. it seems as if they don't feel good and DEF don't want to be touched. I bet they'll come around again after they are finished. Mine did.[​IMG]
     

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