Pecking Order ??

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by kbreak, Nov 28, 2011.

  1. kbreak

    kbreak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 1, 2011
    Columbia, MS
    We got 4 hens Buff Orpingtons, 1 rooster Buff Orpington and a runt just thrown in. We have had them for a week. They had all been together when we got them. I had wanted Americauna because of the colored eggs. My husband bought 2 and put in the coop with the other 6. They are being so mean to the Americauna hens, they hardly get off the roost. Everytime they do they get pecked. The smaller of the 2 flew out of the coop nad stayed out over night. Roosted on the outside nesting boxes. But the poor thing we have 2 bantam that free range (that bantam hen) was even mean to her so she flew back into coop with the others. Today they were hungry so i stayed in the coop and kept the others away while they ate some. It sad they are being so mean. Is ther anything I can do to stop it. We will probably let them free range after nest week. Was giving them time in coop so they will know where to come roost. Any suggestions ? Hope it will get better when we free range.
    These are my Americauna [​IMG]
    My Rooster [​IMG]
    Part of the flock [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    These are my bantam the rooster isn't mean to her but the little hen was ? [​IMG]
    Any suggestions would be appreciated..
     
  2. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Better to give them space than to keep them cooped up together. If they have room to get away from each other they will usually work things out a lot faster without hurting themselves.
    I've had chickens for about 25 years and would never force them to stay in a tiny area when adding a newcomers. ( same with horses, cattle, or other herd animals) giving them space, they will work it out and either form small groups inside the flock or just rearrange the pecking order. The weaker ones can run away rather than getting cornered and hurt.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2011
  3. kbreak

    kbreak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 1, 2011
    Columbia, MS
    Quote:Thanks for your input. I think on sunday we may try to let them out and free range and hope they all come back to roost !!
     
  4. Cynthia12

    Cynthia12 Always Grateful Premium Member

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    I just went through the same thing with a new hen. She was laying regularly for the guy I got her from, but of course she stopped for a while when she got here. Here is the thing. She was being picked on at this other place. He wanted to place her for that reason. It's a brown leghorn. I would say you would be surprised at who the meanie was here, but you may..my mottled bantam cochin..a sweetheart to us. There is just something about this leghorn that she doesn't like. Well, it took a good 5 days for that leghorn to want to come out of the coop. I just let them be. I let them out to free range in the back, and she finally made her way out of the coop and the coop area. That little bantam would literately hang onto feathers as the leghorn tried running off. She was so skittish of the others, and they would just turn towards her to get her away. It's now been a week, and she is fitting in pretty good. The bantam isn't hanging on any longer, but will chase her off. She even comes up to me now..which she wouldn't before, and eats from my hand..and of course runs off as soon as she gets the food. [​IMG] That's good for a leghorn though, especially one that had been such a coward. I think the others just sense the nervous ones. She also now lays again. In the nest box. [​IMG]
    Good luck, I think they will work things out..they get used to each other.
     

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