She BIT me

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by NorthChicken, Feb 22, 2014.

  1. NorthChicken

    NorthChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    I was out this morning loving on the girls, when my Welsummer launched off the ground and nailed my lip. No biggy, I figured she was seeing my shiny eyes or something, I kind of pushed her away and stood back up not thinking much of it, just to keep my face out of chicken range.

    This afternoon, I went back out to bring some fresh water and of course give the chickens their snack and more pets. After they were done eating, they were just kind of wandering around me, scratching in the hay, etc. I was crouched on the ground, when the Weslummer came over and was almost glaring at me. I kind of pushed her away a bit with my fingers, and she puffed up her neck feathers and flew at me, grabbing my finger in a nasty bite. I took her and held her on her back for a few seconds, then I carried her around for about 3 minutes. She was fine in my arms, didn't struggle, she was just obnoxiously loud like she always is.

    She is 23 weeks old, and the only chicken not squatting for me when I pet her (the other 5 squat--only have 3 layers though at the moment). Is this a behavior I need to be worried about? I have a 5 year old son who sometimes likes to help me with the chickens, and I do NOT want him getting bit. He knows to keep his face away from them, but still enjoys petting them. These chickens are supposed to be a fun hobby, not something to worry about.

    I have read to tap her with my fingers like a beak to prove I am dominant, but that just caused more aggression from her. Not sure how much aggression I should put up with.

    I have a low tolerance for biting pets, just want to know if this is some normal chicken thing that I need to learn to tolerate, or if she is going to get worse? Any advice?
     
  2. TheEggCollecter

    TheEggCollecter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like you have a unexpected rooster. If she ain't squatting yet, she is probably a he. Just being protective over his hens.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. NorthChicken

    NorthChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Here is the offender. She looks like a hen to me, but I'm new to chickens, so I could be wrong! What do you think? No crowing yet, but also no squatting or eggs so far.

    She is definitely an 'in your face' chicken, the first one to come running when there is food, and constantly pecking at my clothes and shoes for attention.

    I was really wanting some beautiful welsummer eggs, so she better smarten up!!!
    [​IMG]
     
  4. TheEggCollecter

    TheEggCollecter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well... she does look like a hen but it is hard to tell. Some roosters don't develop tail feathers for awhile, same for crowing. I say just wait it out and see.
     
  5. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

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    It's definitely a pullet. Welsummer cockerels are colored much differently. From Feathersite

    [​IMG]

    Yours certainly does sound like she has a major attitude. Is she the dominant of the flock?
     
  6. NorthChicken

    NorthChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Ok, good to see it looks like she is a hen.
    And she is definitely top dog of the flock!
     
  7. PimentoPlymouth

    PimentoPlymouth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She could just be playing the protector role if you have no roosters in your flock. It's kind of a personal judgement call on how to handle her from here on out. It may not get better sometimes genes cant be changed.
     
  8. NorthChicken

    NorthChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks for the advice! Being new to chickens, I don't know what is normal chicken behavior, and if this is something that I just have to learn to deal with, an occasional chicken bite.

    I don't need cuddly chickens (I do enjoy giving them pets and letting them hop on my lap for a cuddle if THEY choose), but for the most part I just let them do their thing. So I like to think it's not too much to ask that if I want to sit and watch my chickens, I shouldn't have to worry about getting bit.

    I will play it by ear, and if she does it again in short time, I may cull her. She is beautiful, but I don't want to be nervous to have my son around the chickens and I can't say I enjoy being bit!
     
  9. PimentoPlymouth

    PimentoPlymouth Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had to cull a rooster because it would flog my wife and made me nervous with my 3 yr old son so couldn't take the risk.
     
  10. NorthChicken

    NorthChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, my question has been answered. Went out there this morning, and she literally went after me, feet flying, hackles raised. I tapped her with my fingers and she whipped around to bite me. I started trying to walk away and she started advancing towards me with hackles up. I had a tupperware container in my hand and I bopped her with it, and she again flew at me with feet and wings. This time I booted her in the chest as she meant to do damage. She again came at me, I couldn't believe she was so persistent/aggressive. Biting is one thing, but her charging me with hackles raised and trying to flog me again and again is another.

    We will cull her this afternoon and have chicken for dinner.

    So disappointed, I was really looking forward to her beautiful eggs and it breaks my hear to have to cull one of the girls in my small flock, but I will NOT tolerate that kind of attitude from a chicken.
     

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