Pecking Problems...

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Chicks Galore3, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. Chicks Galore3

    Chicks Galore3 Artistic Bird Nut Premium Member

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    My chickens are pulling feathers! I thought mites/lice were to blame, but this morning I saw one of them was bleeding around the head! One also has some major feather loss. I have a pretty good idea who the main bullies are...what do I do to stop them? :(
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Remove the bully and isolate away from the flock for a week. When it returns, it should be at the bottom of the pecking order. Usually, the causes of feather picking are too little space and/or too little protein in the diet. From the FAW forum:

    My chickens are pecking/eating each others' feathers:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=34705
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=31291
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=36139
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=30486
     
  3. Chicks Galore3

    Chicks Galore3 Artistic Bird Nut Premium Member

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    I don't think it is to little space- they have more 215 feet for 12 chickens! My brother just went out and said the bully was pulling leg feathers and eating them!!!!
     
  4. Chicks Galore3

    Chicks Galore3 Artistic Bird Nut Premium Member

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    Ok, more then one chicken is pulling feathers and eating them. Several of them are. One chicken has a lot of chest feathers gone! They escaped the coop, (the snuck out before I could shut the door) And the ALL rushed to the cat food dish and gobbled it up like there was nothing else on earth to eat...they even skipped the kitty litter, which they love. [​IMG] I am thinking they need more protein- My feed is 16%. how much should I have?
     
  5. Chicks Galore3

    Chicks Galore3 Artistic Bird Nut Premium Member

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    Dec 16, 2011
    Iowa
    All right- The bully pulled my last straw when she pecked another's face and drew blood- off to seclusion she goes!!!!! Should I let her free range with the others, or keep her completely away from everybody?
     
  6. kdwag

    kdwag Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Everyone says keep them completely isolated, although I tried that with mine for 4 days and 3 nights, without success. She's back to her attacking habits and I am at a loss with what to do with her.
     
  7. Chicks Galore3

    Chicks Galore3 Artistic Bird Nut Premium Member

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    I just hope I don't have to send her to another home...or worse. I am hoping that maybe when spring comes (Which isn't far away!) she'll stop. When I kept her in from free ranging, her sister was pacing back and forth, calling for her. :(
     
  8. kdwag

    kdwag Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I put my bully back in today with the flock. She strarted being crazy, so I isolated her but decided I can't keep doing the time out in the dog cage. So, I put her back and will see if they can figure it out themselves. She's chasing them on occasion but no injuries. I can't keep her in a cage all the time, that's not fair to her. So, if it gets too bad and she doesn't settle down, I think I'll just have her culled.
     

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