This pecking is going to be the death of me!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by csummer8882, Feb 1, 2012.

  1. csummer8882

    csummer8882 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2011
    Rockingham County, NH
    I have a GC that I have been posting about. She has now taught ALL of the girls to peck.....and boy are they tearing each other up. I am so frustrated. Now what do I do to stop all of this?!
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    How much space do they have?
    They don't have to be taught to peck.
    Bored chickens pick on each other.
    Give more space or add distractions.
    Hide treats.
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2012
  3. mtnhens4

    mtnhens4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2011
    Western NC
    Maybe you could try those chicken aprons that cover their backs, or if it was warmer I would give them a spray with the water hose to help them forget about eachother for a while. Do they have enough room to get away from eachother? maybe give them a half a cabbage for something else to peck at? I hope this helps, maybe others will give more ideas.
  4. csummer8882

    csummer8882 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2011
    Rockingham County, NH

    This is a pic of the coop and run. I put out scratch every morning, they have water, food, treats, toys, you name it, they have it. I am at my wits end! We will be extending the run this spring but until the ground unfreezes, we are stuck. I can't let them free range cause the neighbor has a dog that they let roam everywhere and she does go at the chickens.
  5. PtldChick

    PtldChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2011
    Portland, OR
    It's hard to tell how deep the run is, but it looks like about the minimum amount off space you'd want in a run. For six hens, 60sq ft, and better to have more.

    I'd go with some toys for them, like a flock block, hanging cabbage, suet cages, etc., to hopefully take their attention. Also, make sure you BlueKote any places that are red from pecking as they are attracted to red and will peck more.

    Then, expand that run when the ground thaws. Allow them to go under the coop if they can't already. It's kind of an escape for hens being pecked on. You might be able to do that now before the ground thaws by attaching hardware cloth around the bottom of the coop.
  6. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I agree. They aren't teaching each other, they are "sharing their boredom". Your run needs to be three times bigger and twice as interesting to help ease the strain of confinement. Please take no offense, but this is why confined chickens in the industry have trimmed beaks. Since turning them loose isn't an option, you'll have to be expanding that run size considerably, I should think.

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