1. RidgeRunner Hen

    RidgeRunner Hen Out Of The Brooder

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    May 16, 2010
    I have two broilers that have obviously been seriously pecked at....one has been pecked so badly that the skin is gone from a section of his rear...
    I washed and put 'blue lotion' from our horse medic kit (it's basically idodine antiseptic) in hopes that it will keep them from being pecked any more.

    Why do they do this?
    The chicks are 3 weeks old, beginning to feather out and growing great....
    They are in a truck that is big enough and get moved, fed and watered with great care!?!?
     
  2. b.hromada

    b.hromada Flock Mistress

    I don't have an answer, because you have said that they have plenty of room. [​IMG] Lets see if someone else can help you.
     
  3. mamachook

    mamachook New Egg

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    May 29, 2010
    I had a similar problem when my girlies were about this age.
    Sometimes even if they have plenty of room they can get bored and start pecking at each other. You could try getting them to focus on something else, like giving them fun food scraps to play with. Try hanging stuff from the ceiling of their enclosure, whatever they like: my girls love weed-grass, and I've heard of people hanging cabbage from the ceiling, though not usually with chickens this young. The point is to distract them and get them to forget about pecking each other.

    A big thing is that they probably don't have enough protein. Feathers are very high in protein and that's often why they cannibalize like this. Try feeding them something high in protein - I used SPAM, a really cheap canned mystery meat that I cut into small chunks. But I live in Hawaii, and I guess you can't get SPAM on the mainland? I've heard that cat food works too as it is high in protein. Any cheap meat works, and it will also help to distract them.

    Another thing is that if they draw blood, the sight and scent of it will kind of urge them to keep pecking each other more and more. If the bullying gets too severe, you could isolate the ones that have been pecked for just a short while (not too long or else they will be outcasts when they rejoin the others) until they heal a bit more, like the blood scabs over.

    Hope this helps! Good luck!
     

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