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"peepers" experiences

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by andrej33, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. andrej33

    andrej33 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 25, 2011
    I have 4 auricanas 2 black sexlinks and 2 NH reds. They are all roughly 5 1/2 months old and some started laying this week. They have all gotten along fairly well until now. One of the reds who has been "queen chicken" is getting rough with the auricanas. Starting to peck more aggressively. The other red is also getting more aggressive as well as one of the Black sexlinks. I am adjusting feed as I have seen recommended. I have separated today the most aggressive red until i can figure out what to do. The coop is 4 x 9 and there has not been a problem in there. There is plenty of perch space but they still insisted on all cuddling together. Outside they have roughly 9 x 12. I have seen these "peepers" occasionally on the threads here. I wanted some input from people who have actually used them.
    1. Are they something that works?
    2. Once you put them on a chicken do you just leave them?
    3. If you take them off do they resume the aggressive behavior?
    4. Can they hurt the chicken? It would seem that since they go into the nostril and they run into something or clip it, couldn't it harm or break the beak?
    5. Do the other chickens start pecking at it?
    6. Do they affect their breathing?
    7. What are the pro's and Cons?

    Any other input would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
    Andre
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2011
  2. andrej33

    andrej33 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 25, 2011
    Doesn't anybody have any experience with "peepers" they want to share?
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I have experience. Or my one-year old EE Flo does.

    She was cannibalizing feathers from four other hens, and the feather loss was getting fierce. So I ordered pinless peepers from Randall Burkey. Warning, 100 is the minimum order, but they're not expensive. You will need a special tool to install them, called snap-ring pliers. Ones with a 90 degree head work better than the straight head. They spread the prongs so the peepers can be placed.

    They are about 80% effective, at least with Flo. She wore them for two months, the feather picking all but abated, and I took them off her a week ago. She resumed feather picking as soon as she adjusted to being able to see normally again. The next day I re-installed them. The feather picking stopped.

    The installation is not painless, as the nostrils are a very tender spot. However, after a few days, it toughens up and it's not so sensitive. Taking the peepers off is more painful. I'm going by the amount of fuss Flo put up.

    The others were only mildly curious about the new accessory, but no one pecked them. However, when I go to cuddle Flo, which she adores, I have to be careful not to touch the peepers since nudging them hurts her. She also has trouble navigating the plastic pop hole flaps on the coop, since her forward vision is impaired and also jostling the peepers against the flaps hurts. But she asks me to hold the flaps up when she wants in. She communicates her needs extremely well! For a cannibal, she's very charming.

    It's worked for Flo, but I've heard from others who had zero success with them. Most people report they're pretty effective, and do at least cut down the aggression.
     
  4. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No luck here! You never no. I left them on for along time .[​IMG]They did look like they were styling though. I think they make some that are bigger maybe I got the wrong ones. Good luck!!
     
  5. andrej33

    andrej33 Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Thanks so much for your response! My two New Hampshire reds are the sweetest birds to my wife and me. But they can be brutal to other chickens - especially to one of the other aricanas we have. Yesterday one the reds grabbed her by the neck and started dragging her around. So I took the two New Hampshires out from the other birds yesterday for overnight. Before putting them back today we filed the sharp tip off the beaks to see if that will stop some of the aggression. So far today it is better. I do have 10 of the "peepers" Have not tried them yet. The "Pins" seem so close together! It just looks like they would hurt. Maybe I should experiment with trimming the pins a little. I'm hoping I wont need them.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2011
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Wise and also kind of you to exhaust all other solutions before you resort to the peepers. They aren't what I would want to live with stuck in my nose. And altering their vision causes interference in all sorts of activities. Flo has trouble eating things I offer her from my hand and this interferes with her ability to compete with the others for food. In her case, though, she wasn't going to reform, so she may be wearing the peepers for a while. I'll take them off her in a few more months to check to see if maturity is making a difference in her feather fixation. Their behaviors do modify over time, I've noticed.

    I also made saddles for the victims which really helped a lot.
     
  7. kelidei

    kelidei ~*Dances with chickens*~

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    I have successfully used peepers. I swear by them if you have a problem with pecking. You do not need the pliers... I bought them and when push came to shove it was easier without them. What I did was soak them in hot water so they were more pliable and easily put them on without the pliers. It does help if you have two people... one to hold the chicken and the other to apply the peepers. As far as removing them... I have discovered that they will eventually fall off on their own. Hope this helps! Oh!!! BTW if you have a choice get the yellow ones NOT the red ones... why they make them in red I do not understand... chickens love to pick at red things [​IMG]
     

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