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PECKING ORDER VS. REAL PROBLEM?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by dumblond, Sep 16, 2007.

  1. dumblond

    dumblond Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2007
    Joplin, Missouri
    Girls were FINE al day long, they are 24 (plus?) weeks. Went to check for last egg at 1PM after the pounding rain quit and everyone was fine. I have to be at work at 4am, so I am home by 1pm. Recently got new (2 week) chicks, which I have taken out 3 times in a covered run(RAINING), so the big girls couldn't hurt them. I got called back in to work, happens 2 times a year usually when I'm on call.. I'm a histologist, we had an autopsy. So I asked the DH to let them out when he got home at 5. Today I noticed that 2 of my big girls had breast feathers missing, one of them with blood and the other one had both breast feathers missing and with missing saddle/tail feathers missing. NO, I reapeat NO rooster, so it's not that. I have NEVER had a proble with pecking order, they know I am top hen. Would one day out of the norm cause this? My cornersare even covvered so that prededars can't get into the corners of the run, my girls have to hide somewhere, you know. Long story short......I put blu_kote on the breast area of both "picked" pullets and instead of supressing the pecking it encouraged the pecking.......BAD!!!! Now I am a night owl by nature, so I have to be up or stay up for 2-3 hours, okay stay up...not hard to do, so either sepaerate or another solution??????? Don't care what the DH says 24 hour surveilience is going up.[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2007
  2. peepkeeper

    peepkeeper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 5, 2007
    upstate New York
    Were the little ones in with the big ones? Introducing new chickens upsets everyone and sometimes the existing flock turns on each other until a new order is established. If not, I don't know. I'd separate the injured until they heal up. Sorry this happened. Good luck.
     
  3. bantymum

    bantymum Chillin' With My Peeps

    Get some white styrofoam, the foam they use for boxes eskies and surfboards and packing, put a piece in the pen.
    For some reason this stops the pecking and they pick that instead!
    good luck, its sounds very stressful, otherwise separate them within the coop.
     
  4. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    ...I hate to disagree but I would under no circumstances allow them styrofoam to peck at...
    if you feel they are bored then give them a watermelon or such... wrap a head of lettuce in some chicken wire for them to peck at...but no styrofoam!
    I think it is always a good idea to give a good poultry nutritional/vitamin supplement whenever you see things are wrong (if nothing else when you give a complete supplement like Avia Charge 2000 , you can be assured that it is probably not due to any dietary element )
     
  5. bantymum

    bantymum Chillin' With My Peeps

    I can see your point , however this is supposed to be a cure for feather/vent picking. Surely they will spit it out when they realise it doesnt smell nice!! one would hope so!
     
  6. dumblond

    dumblond Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2007
    Joplin, Missouri
    The little ones are not in with the big ones. When I do take out the little ones the are in separate runs, but next to each other. I would have sworn by blu-kote until now. I do have a hanging tomato plant in their run, but I think it has finally quit producing, so I will hang a head of lettuce today, give V&E. Is this just pecking order?
     
  7. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    ...sometimes but often their is a nutritional element involved too... I mentioned the complete supplement (I only know of the Avia Charge 2000 which you can order through McMurrys or Strombergs) because it has the complete range of nutritional/micro and macro elements in the correct ratio to each other and a "general" vitamin supplement will only have a few... Methionine is most often the indicated derficiency associated with feather picking ....
    add some sunflower seed hearts (tryptophan) as this is also implicated in agressiveness... live culture yogurt will also provide protein (and methionine somewhat)


    Bantymum...no, they will not spit it out and I know of a few people whose birds have become very ill to the point of death from overindulging on styrofoam.
     
  8. bantymum

    bantymum Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks dhunicorn, ill remember that, the woman who told me this I would have thought knew what she was talking about! please ignore this advice, im very sorry!
    Good luck with the hens, Once they get a taste of blood it can be difficult to snap them out of it.
     
  9. dumblond

    dumblond Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2007
    Joplin, Missouri
    Thanks for the help!
     

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