personality change in hen

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by bj taylor, Mar 2, 2013.

  1. bj taylor

    bj taylor Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 28, 2011
    North Central Texas
    i have a very small flock. four girls & one big rooster. my barred rock used to be so bossy & sure of herself. she was top girl. she has changed. she is nervous, avoids the rooster like crazy & has a different voice - a nervous unsure of herself voice. she isn't the top girl anymore & just kinda stays on the fringes. she has been like this for a couple of months now.
    what would explain this behavior?
     
  2. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Out to pasture
    could be your rooster is breeding her too much, hens often hide them them. You only have 4 hens so he is probably after them too much. Another 4 or 5 hens and he wouldn't be spending so much time with the same ones. Are you hens showing any injuries which would confirm they are overbred? Things like missing feathers, raw bleeding areas etc. are indications of this. Would also explain the personality change in her. Some roosters are just not good flock leaders. The dynamics might just be wrong and another rooster might fit in much better - or pen up the rooster for awhile and see if you hen improves while he isn't harassing her.
     
  3. bj taylor

    bj taylor Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 28, 2011
    North Central Texas
    it is true, i do not have enough birds. my girls do have bare areas on their backs. because my flock is so small i had read that it is almost impossible to add to them and have them accept new birds, so i was hoping i would have someone going broody soon.
    he has been a great rooster in all regards. he's very protective of them, but not aggressive to me at all. i don't see him being "mean" per se - but he is big (black australorp).
     
  4. bwahk

    bwahk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 25, 2013
    Dumb Cluck California
    I have the same issue with my rooster picking on my top hen (even tho I have 18 hens), she avoids him and I have to keep him separate for now unless they're outside... I've heard they calm as they mature.

    I would suggest adding more to your flock, two at a time is how I do it. Yes they fight for a few days, but they calm pretty quick.
     

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