The Pecking Order

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Col1948, Sep 24, 2018.

  1. Google how do chickens see the world. The best articles are found on University Animal Science web sights. Enjoy yourself.

    BTW, chickens have a 3rd eye inside the top of the head that is believed to be the organ that "SEES" Ultraviolet light. Chickens can look both ways at once and a lot of other screwy things. Is it any wonder then that someone looking at the world escance is said to be "Cockeyed" or seeing things like a chicken.

    Health is dominance in my book. Now I ask you why would you want to degrade the health (a.k.a. dominance) of the most dominant and healthy members of your flock?

    But that is exactly one of the most often asked questions on this forum. "How can I stop my hen from being dominant or healthy" we just call it bullying like a chicken is a 6 year old child then we pat ourselves on the back because we think that we are morally superior to a chicken and that hens share our petty concerns.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  2. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    Roost time is always brutal looking it never changes. There will be pecking for the best spot. There will be pecking because a lower hen is in a spot only a high ranker should be. There will be pecking for the spot beside the rooster. There will be pecking just because someone looks funny. It is terribly unsettling to watch, but that is just the nature of them even little poofy pet type chickens do it. My coop is packed with faverolles a breed about as agressive as a marshmallow and they do it.:)
     
  3. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

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    Yep, roosting time is fight night. The pattern here seems to senior rooster in first, senior hen next and so on descending through the group.
    Pecking order here within a group or tribe seems to be based on age. This seems reasonable given age usually means experience.
     
  4. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    True,true! Here the rooster is flanked by the elder hens, the young ones roost in a group by themselves and the prime age hens have a roost. The lead hen roosts with the prime ages, but her spot is always closest to the wall. Lead hen spot is set in stone that is what causes most fights here, low rankers in her spot. She's last to roost though so i'm starting to think she just enjoys a good fight before bed.:D
     
  5. moniquem

    moniquem Crowing

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    Ugh, I agree with all. My SS that has not even started thinking of laying is the lowest on the totem pole. Night time can get mean and sometimes I worry that she will be roosting alone come winter time. But I can do nothing about the order and hopefully all will work itself out in the end......
     
  6. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

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    The fact that chickens can see in the ultra violet spectrum isn't often mentioned.....obviously not enough chicken keepers take their flocks to discos!
    chickengeorgeto mentions this may be an aid to health assessment, he may be right.
    What is fasinating is looking at a chickens plumage under ultraviolet.
     
  7. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    It will. And don't worry she won't roost alone even the low one squeezes in when it gets cold. She'll take a fair number of pecks but won't freeze. She might not even be the lowest by then either it just depends on her. One mature hen here is lower than POL pullets just due to her meekness, so if your SS gets a little sass she'll get a better spot. It is usually based on age,but not always.:)
     
    Fields Mountain Farm and Col1948 like this.
  8. Now remember that you and I can't see anything in the Ultraviolet spectrum and it should become abundantly clear that we know little about what goes on in a chickens' brain if in fact anything goes on in there.

    What I am really saying is chill out and let your chickens be chickens, they are better at it than we are.

    I like the analogy of tribalism in regards to the pecking order. A flock of chickens is very much like Native American Warfare. This means that inter-flock conflict is frequent and fierce. Or as my hero Mark Twain once noted, "Every piece of ground has been fought over, conquered, and re-conquered, so many times that today there is not a single acre of land anywhere on Earth that is the hands of it's rightful owner"
     
  9. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

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    Nice Mark twian quote.
    Uv Spectrum analyser. Check out some chickens.
     
    Fields Mountain Farm likes this.
  10. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

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    Fields Mountain Farm likes this.

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