Pecking & Mean hens

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jarzmom, Nov 19, 2009.

  1. jarzmom

    jarzmom Hatching

    Oct 7, 2009
    NE Ohio
    I have 4 barred rocks & 4 golden wyandots. Two of the "dots" are the meanest of the flock. I've named them Amastasia & Dreizilla (the evil stepsisters from Cinderella). Dreizilla is the WORST. All of my "rocks" have bear spots on their back--right where their back meets their tailfeathers. One of my rocks--Noisy Nellie--has the worst, biggest, barest spot of all. Even Barb, my only actively laying hen, has one! Dreizilla has made it her life's goal to chase these hens (especially poor Nellie, who is showing signs of duress from always having to be hyper-aware and is now extremely skittish) and peck peck peck at them!
    I've already bought hot spot, and a flock block (not impressed with the flock block--just another treat and it's falling apart horribly in the chicken run). When I can get the stuff sprayed on my afflicted hens, Drei just wipes her beak off & gets back to her pecking & chasing!
    I thought that I didn't believe in de-beaking, but am considering it now. Either that or killing her (Dreizilla) outright. Will another hen just take her place as the meanest b*@%h in the flock?

  2. chickenlady08

    chickenlady08 Songster

    Jul 27, 2009
    Eastern Shore, VA
    It sounds to me that you have real issues with D. I don't like to have an aggressive bunch of chickens. I had a RIR rooster and he was absolutely gorgeous but was so mean to my girls and to us, after 6 or 7 months I traded him for a White Leghorn hen. Best thing I ever did. I don't like it when somebody is picking on any of my girls. I couldn't kill one of my chickens but wouldn't think twice to get rid of her because she is not going to change.

    The only thing that I can think to do is to put her in a cage by herself for awhile and see if that changes the 'pecking order' maybe if she is gone for a little while then she may not be so aggressive when returned, but I don't know what else for you to try but this and next step to get rid of her or cull her.

    Good Luck and I am sorry
  3. dwegg

    dwegg Songster

    i have just introduced two new girls to my flock of 5...even though the 'old' flock was only a week old!!! But when I did there was one of my new hens (Blue Barred Rock) very pretty who everyone pecks at as she is on the bottom. I have taken my mean girl (Ameracuna) and put her in a small dog crate in the run for a couple of hours while my new girls got used to the run and the other hens.
    It just gave the new girls a little rest without being chased ect. (Henny Penny) did not like that at all but it did manage to not elevate the chasing and pecking. Also when i am around and 'mean girl' Penny chases or pecks at anyone I chase her and pick her up.
    I try to keep them busy with pumpkin, cabage, corn or free ranging when i am home and make sure there is enough 'to do' and enough space for them to get away if they need to.
    Also i made seperate perches for roosting at night so they all had a 'choice' of where to sleep and could move away out of reach from others if they wanted to ect. i also put some perches in the run (branches across corners ect) where they will sit to get away from being chased.

    I would seperate her for a while but where she can see the others and let the others 'rest' and enjoy each others company. Then try her back in with the flock at bed time.

    I hate seeing hens being picked on and am glad my girls have 'almost' settled down and are now starting to act like one whole flock and roost together ect...but still no eggs yet for us!!!! But it is only our third week...we started the light thing last sunday. it now comes on at 3am and off at 9am...I find that the girls go to bed at about 4:30-5pm?

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