Three year old flock of four, one is being pecked and attacked

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Carolina Moon, Feb 2, 2014.

  1. Carolina Moon

    Carolina Moon New Egg

    Mar 31, 2011
    I took the number two in alpha position out for a week to keep her warm in the garage, and feed her tetracyclene for what seemed to be a slight wheezing in her breathing. When I returned her to the flock yesterday, the number one hen attacked her. She fought back so I removed her for a day and tried to introduce her in the dark tonight. It didn't help, and this time they all attacked her. Does anyone have a suggestion?
  2. OLTMR123

    OLTMR123 New Egg

    Jan 25, 2014
    I have only had chickens for a year.And I only have three.A rooster and two hens. One hen is more dominant,follows other constantly, always moves in where other is eating in yard, has attacked her at feeder,we have seen her pecking the other one lately too on neck and backend.So anyway, the rooster seems to prefer the less dominant one who also has been laying more eggs consistently. Her back is bare and we are giving her antibiotics for a wheezing sound and have separated her for a few days.I have also ordered a saddle/apron for her back.I think we will take the more dominant one and put her in a smaller coop for a few days when we put Maggie back in.Someone had said something about the pecking order and we feel she needs to be raised up higher in the flock (3!)That's the only thing we have thought of so far. Hope it works! I have been really worried about her,but she's still laying eggs. She's such a good little chicken.They also have some things you can put on chickens for pecking, on their beaks to stop it..i think.Peepers?If our first plan doesn't work I am going to check into them more.
  3. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 8, 2008
    Hi OLTMR123, welcome to BYC.

    You removed a member of the flock, and while she was gone the rest of the flock adjusted the pecking order for her absence. Now that she's back, the rest of the flock thinks that she should be at the bottom of the pecking order, while she wants her old place back. There's going to be fighting for position any time you remove a hen and re-introduce her.

    Are they drawing blood? If not, then you probably have to let them figure this out on their own. Their behavior is normal and natural to them. You can't raise a chicken up higher in the flock. Some birds are natural leaders, some are not. A human can't really change that.

    If they start to draw blood, then you might try putting some pinless peepers on the attacking hens for a few weeks until the pecking order is re-established. You can buy them through almost any poultry catalog, or in smaller quantities on eBay.

    Also--did you notice that you were posting on a thread from a couple of years ago? You'd have a lot more luck getting your question answered if you start your own thread.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2014

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