Polish Crested problems

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by kesrchicky16, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Out Of The Brooder

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    So we have kind of become a chicken rescue. We had a friend that can no longer keep her 4 pet chickens call and ask us to take them. We have been keeping them side by side with our 13 for 4 days and let them free range together today. The 4 new ones seem to stick really close together and we didn't notice any problem while they were free. I'm pretty sure the polish crested is the bottom of the new flock. When we called them in for dinner and to be locked up for the night everyone was doing the pecking order thing except the Polish. She was trying to fight. We have 2 Easter Eggers that are the bottom of our existing flock. I think they would probably like to move up but kept they "Sorry I offended you. I'll run away now" attitudinize. I don't want to loose anyone if the Polish "attacked" one of the top chickens. According to my research Polish are skittish because they can't see. My only thought to help this problem would be to use scissors and give her a "hair cut" trimming the hanging down feathers so she can see. I would watch and see if that helps her try to establish order instead of fight.

    Other than making her less pretty will a "hair cut" hurt her?

    Any other solutions?
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    Mine get routine haircuts. They always grow out a few feathers afterwards so it's never a neat tidy look. I find it strange the polish has such spunk, usually they get picked on. Are you sure it's a hen?
     
  3. Melody the Goat

    Melody the Goat Out Of The Brooder

    I've had a couple Polish hens in the past, and I did try cutting the crest feathers on one of them but for a different reason. That particular Polish had a full, heavy crest that, as she got older (say maybe two months old) it began drooping over onto one side of her head and she couldn't see at all from that side (her eye itself was fine, it was just the crest that got in the way). I tried putting a pony tail holder around her crest, which worked for a few minutes, but then it slid off.
    Next I tried cutting the feathers on her crest that made it droop so. It did work pretty well, but as she got a little older I didn't worry about it anymore and just left her alone. The rest of the time I had her she was mostly one-eyed. She got along fine with the other chickens though. [​IMG]

    You can go ahead and trim her crest feathers, but I would be very careful not to cut so low as to make them bleed.

    Good luck!
     
  4. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Out Of The Brooder

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    So no I don't know how to lift their skirts. The new 4 are 2 RIR, a white Plymouth Rock, and the Polish. They are all 2 years old and the Polish is a runt compared to the other 3. While they were still penned I got an egg that was almost as white as a store eggs. This is all I know for sure. I will post a pic in a bit.
     
  5. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Out Of The Brooder

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    [​IMG]
    The big pretty white tail feathers belong to the new Plymoth Rock. Our 1 year old Speckled Sussex is in the background.
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    A lovely buff laced. Definitely give her a trim. The white crested varieties don't often need trimming, but the laced ones seem to have a looser topnot and do well with a trim. It's good she's feisty, it will hopefully keep anyone from picking on her which often happens with polish.
     
  7. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Out Of The Brooder

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    So I guess the next question is "How much can I cut without causing bleeding?" Halfway down the feather? 25%? 75%?

    I know cutting the higher feathers to not weigh the bottoms down will help. I was thinking kind of a Mohawk look. She is very easy to handle. The old owner could rock her like a baby and put her to sleep.
     
  8. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    Feathers don't bleed unless the are newly growing blood feathers which happens during a molt. After the feather is done growing in the bloodline retreats.

    I trim mine to leave about 1/2 to 1 inch poodle type puffball on top.
     
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  9. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    [​IMG]

    These two were trimmed in January. Nice even trims which promptly grow out sprigs, but they can see better. If yours has a beard or muffs, trim them too if they impede her vision.
     
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  10. kesrchicky16

    kesrchicky16 Out Of The Brooder

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    The haircut is done. The first few snips went well. Then she could see the scissors coming and stopped cooperating. [​IMG]
     

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