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Turkeys beat up on my chickens

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by veronicadm8, Sep 18, 2015.

  1. veronicadm8

    veronicadm8 Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello all,
    I'm fairly new to turkeys- I've kept chickens for several years and have primarily silkies. I have two young Narraggansetts (less than 6 mos) who seem to single a chicken, not always the same one, and beat the crap out of him/her. I currently have a bloody chicken in isolation (my favorite, of course) :( I really enjoy the turkeys, but I obviously can't have this. Any of you also have this issue? The gal I got them from has always kept turkeys with chickens and never had an issue. Separate pens are not an option, I am determined to have them free range. Is this a phase? Similar to a young roo who eventually mellows out?? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Are they both jakes/toms?
     
  3. veronicadm8

    veronicadm8 Out Of The Brooder

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    No. One male, one female. She seems to be the primary aggressor.
     
  4. btguy

    btguy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My midget whites do the same thing if they get the chance. I sit with the and herd them apart while they free range and keep them lucked up separately when I can't be out there
     
  5. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    How long have they been together? Did this behavior start immediately after introduction, or did it take some time before it started? I'd find some way of separating them, for the time being. Only let them "get together" when you are there with a broom to "intimidate" them as soon as the behavior begins. Probably a pecking order behavior that needs to be ended immediately before they get a taste for blood (not good).

    Our turkeys arrived after the chooks were already "well established" and the chooks & roo gave the poults the "what for". So all turkey generations since have avoided getting close to the chooks. If the turks are dirt bathing in the firepit and and chooks show up - away go the turks.
     
  6. veronicadm8

    veronicadm8 Out Of The Brooder

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    That's the thing that has me stumped. I've had the turkeys since they were young, the aggressive behavior is very recent. I don't have a very aggressive roo, either. Although some of the hens put them in their place. Mostly my polish girls, who are significantly bigger than my silkies.
     
  7. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    Well, if you can't separate (only way to be sure) I'd suggest applying a bit of pine tar to the crowns of the heads/backs of necks of the most likely victims - don't know how that would go if the usual victims are Silkies.
    Pine tar is a PITA to work with: warm a dab in a disposable med cup (nuke for 2-3 sec in microwave), wear gloves and rub a thin layer onto chook. Stuff tastes so bad that it kept our jakes from sparring themselves into bloody messes as they "practiced their chops".
     
  8. veronicadm8

    veronicadm8 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you, I'll give that a try. I need to figure out a permanent solution but hopefully that will suffice in the meantime!
     
  9. Turkeytruff

    Turkeytruff Chillin' With My Peeps

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    how did that pine tar stuff work for your chickens?
    I have a couple of turkey hens that get over enthusiastic in dominating the chickens sometimes....
     
  10. veronicadm8

    veronicadm8 Out Of The Brooder

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    Because I have silkies, I didn't try the pine tar. I went with pinless peepers (XL) for the turkeys. Easy to put on if you soak them in hot water & it doesn't hurt them. They can still see, but it distorts their aim. It worked well for me. Good luck!!
     

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