question on pecking order tiffs

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Iwantchickens, Jun 14, 2009.

  1. Iwantchickens

    Iwantchickens In the Brooder

    Jan 27, 2009
    Is it normal during these pecking order tiffs for feathers/fluff to be pulled out or is this something to worry about?

    No blood, I usually step in cuz the one losing the feather/fluff is smaller ... she actually runs to me for protection.
  2. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    Pecking order tiffs can be brutal. I would keep an eye out and make sure it doesn't turn into one being picked on unmercifully. Hopefully they'll figure out the pecking order soon and things will calm down.
  3. Quote:So there is one hen that is being particularly picked on? By how many others? And how much smaller is she? This sounds a little bit worrying. [​IMG]
  4. willheveland

    willheveland Songster

    Jan 29, 2008
    southern tier,NY
    Quote:It sounds cruel but that is how a flock works,sadly there is always a runt or low man on the totem pole(with most animal groups and sometimes people too) Over time things may get better,I wouldn't pamper her over the others too much it may make things worst.Let her blend in best as you can. Will
  5. Judy

    Judy Crowing

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    If there is one in particular who is doing the pecking, isolate it for several days, then return it. It will then be at the bottom of the pecking order.

    Another thought is boredom. Sometimes, more distractions can solve this problem. More space, more things like hanging cabbages o pick on, hiding treats in grass clippings or hay or whatever, so they have to scratch and hunt for them, etc.

    You gave very little information. If they are indoors in a brooder, I would get them outside.

    Read here:

    I know you didn't post in emergencies, but this is still a useful guideline.

    Also, on the FAQ page, there are some links to good threads about feather picking and plucking.
  6. plowbouy

    plowbouy In the Brooder

    Jun 13, 2009
    I had two (out of 28) that were getting pecked on at about 6 weeks of age.. mostly they were pulling their new tail feathers off..

    Just over night they pecked on one and it got bloody so I isolated her for a few days and sprayed some "blue kote" (can be found at farm fleet for $6) on the wounded area and surrounding feathers and put her back with the others.. They pecked at her a little but, but once they got the bitter taste of blue kote in their mouth.. they stopped.

    The other one I saw before they drew blood, so I sprayed blue kote on her tail feathers too and they stopped pecking her.

    I sprayed it on their tail feathers once a day for a few days and monitored it closely there after. No problems since.
  7. Judy

    Judy Crowing

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Did not think of Blue Kote. Worked for me, too.

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