Silkie won't stop biting me!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chick-habit, Dec 11, 2016.

  1. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our biggest bird in a flock of 3 is also lowest in the pecking order. She was hand raised with lots of love and handling. For the last week or so she bites and bites every time I put my hands near her. I've never done anything rough or mean to her, she has no reason to fear my hands and she has no issue with accepting food from them. She'll also kinda "square up" like she's trying to intimidate me[​IMG]. I thought she had sour crop and took her to the vet and chalked up her biting to not feeling good but the vet said she was fine. It makes me sad that my little lady is aggressive towards me especially when the other two are snugglers. Any advice?
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2016
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    How old? Are you positive she is a she?
     
  3. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We got her in April as a chick and she's been laying
     
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Let It Snow Premium Member

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    Is she broody? What do you mean by squares up? Biting birds are usually broody or feeling maternal, hormones can bring out defensive behaviors in hens.
     
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Ditto. It could also be her displaying dominance over you.
     
  6. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do think it's a dominance thing. By squaring up I meant almost like preparing to fight. She stands really tall with her chest out and as if she's about to charge me. She just stopped being broody a few days ago. Hopefully the hormones are still wearing off. Should I just try to sit with her and hand feed her? When she bites sometimes I'll gently get her to be in a sitting position and I'll keep her there for a moment. With my hand on her back. My goal is for her to know I'm the dominant one. I'm being really gentle with her because I don't want to give her an actual reason to not like/fear me. @oldhenlikesdogs
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2016
  7. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Let It Snow Premium Member

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    Most dominance among chickens unfortunately is a bit cruel to us humans involving pecking and chasing. I might try pinning her down like a rooster when she gets feisty, and hold her down for a few seconds. Not too often do you hear of feisty silkies.
     
  8. chick-habit

    chick-habit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's why I'm so surprised! She's always been so sweet. Even in the brooder when the other girls were cold they'd all snuggle under her. She's so low on the totem pole now I wonder if she just really wants to have someone she can boss around.
     

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