Seperating the flock?

Ladies in Red

In the Brooder
Jan 7, 2018
21
18
34
Scotland
Hello, I've read a lot about bullying but unsure what action to take. I have 4 ex-battery, probably a couple of years old now, I've had them since September. One appears to be winding down, nothing obvious and I have reluctantly decided to take her to avian vet - she's still eating and drinking and preening, just not herself (fluffed up and quiet when she used to be the greediest). Ella has always been boss. Pink (sick one) appears to be bottom and I know they may pick on her for being ill. Niala has always been a greedy bully but normally kept in check by Ella. Recently Niala has got really bullish and yesterday had an actual fight with Wambui (Wambers), but typically Wambers and Niala hang out together. Pink keeps herself to herself but they all seemed to get along except when treats come out (egg only, or scratch) and then the behaviour is a bit raucous but nothing serious until now. Ella now spends more time alone (she's on hormones to stop her laying) but she still appears to be in charge. However Niala has started picking on Pink, and Wambers joined in, then Niala and Wambers flew at each other. Now Pink is hiding out in the front garden but Ella has joined her. I'd to think she's protecting her but don't think they do that. Niala is really noisy and a bit out of character (a bit mental) - she's always been Noisy Niala but she's a bit more frenetic now. No major damage done yet but she flew at Pink again for no reason and I don't know whether to separate her off, or separate her with Wambers, and leave Pink and Ella together? I only have one coop and I don't want to do anything drastic, and I'd have to put them back together at night. They free-range 3 sides of the house, plenty to do, plenty of space and vegetation (e.g. 30 sq m at the back, probably 50 - 100 more the rest of the garden, lots of trees, hedges etc. Should I separate Niala from all of them, or leave them 2 and 2 for a while, or just let them get on with it?
I'll get Pink to the vet, I just didn't want the disruption when there is nothing obvious wrong with her. I thought this behaviour was because she was sick, but now that Ella has sided with Pink (possibly just to avoid Niala) I don't know if separating the 2 factions is a good idea or if Niala is the problem, (she and Wambers had a fight also), and Niala needs to be shut out on her own for a few days?
Who knew it would be so complicated. I love all my birds, they are pets and I just want to do the best for them.
Thanks for any advise.
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium member
10 Years
May 3, 2009
90,780
154,145
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Unless blood is being drawn and injuries are severe I would leave them to work things out. Once separated reintegration can be a real nightmare.
 

Ladies in Red

In the Brooder
Jan 7, 2018
21
18
34
Scotland
Hello, they have spent the whole day separate (voluntarily, they aren't locked in or anything), Ella and Pink hiding in the bushes at the front, Niala and Wambers at the front. Should I be concerned that they aren't together if this continues? Thanks
 

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