Three new hens; one open wound

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by suburbanhomesteader, Aug 22, 2007.

  1. I got three new 4 month-old EEs last night, and put them in my 100 square foot chicken tractor.

    They were supposed to be pretty tame, but showed no evidence of that when I picked them up. I thought maybe they were just stressed; now I don't think so. They are wilder than my game hens! I spent some time in their tractor tonight, just reading a book, and they huddled in the furthest corner as if they saw I had fangs and a bloodthirsty look in my eyes. Cantalope, watermelon, sunflower seeds, and even crickets had been laid out to tempt them to come from the corner, to no avail.
    Do you think they will ever get tamer? I have hand-raised Bo and the Production Reds, and dont' ever want wild chickens after having these game hens.

    Another issue is that one of them has pecked the feathers and some skin off another; it's a spot about the size of a quarter, directly between the wing feathers on her back. I'm afraid flies are going to get into that spot. I don't have another tractor to put the meanie in solitary confinement; plus, will that help long-term, anyway? I put some neosporin on the sore, but what would keep the flies off, to keep her from getting maggots in the open wound?

    if this experience doesn't turn around really quickly, I'm going to decide to get only chicks from now on, and just endure the wait for eggs.

    Thanks in advance for your advice on these two issues!
  2. lurky

    lurky Songster

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    I think sometimes its hit or miss as far as friendly goes. I have some that climb all over me and others that go to the far corner like i am a monster. I just bought scratch to try to win them over. Seems to be working too. I just pay attention to the ones that come to me and the others seem to follow them eventually for a closer look. Be patient and i bet they will see your ok. PS. the scratch cant hurt any [​IMG]
  3. We used BluKote on an open wound and it worked well. It seems incredibly toxic but we were desperate and in retrospect I’m glad we went w/ it.
  4. Standard Hen

    Standard Hen Songster

    May 17, 2007
    I would definately give them some time to settle in. They are scared, in a new place and have no clue as to what is going on. Give them some treats and I can bet they will come around. As far as one pecking on another to cause an open wound they might have been previously confined in a very small area and that will cause picking on each other to happen. I have amny times got older birds and everyone always seem to fit in after awhile. I would throw some greens, grass, fruit whatever today in the pen to keep them busy and something else to concentrate on aside from being scared.
    I have never had a wound problem as of yet but everyone says to use the BluKote. Your feed store should have it and I would think the Neosporin would be better than nothing but am really not sure. I would have done the same thing or put horse salve on it until I could get the BluKote.
  5. Thanks, everyone. Never heard of BluKote, but the guy across the street frequently has purple spots on his horses; I wonder if that is it? I will borrow some tomorrow.

    They were virtually free-ranging during the day until they came here, so perhaps even the big tractor makes them feel too confined.

    Tonight I sat with them, and scooched progressively closer to the corner in which they huddled, and sang and talked to them. I encouraged Bo and the Production Reds to come closer to all of us, and at the end of a couple of hours, I just went ahead and reached out and held each one a couple of times. They weren't happy about it, but they didn't fight it.

    I'll throw some different kind of treats in there tomorrow.

    Thanks again!

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