Unexpected death

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by xander, Feb 17, 2013.

  1. xander

    xander New Egg

    Feb 17, 2013
    New Zealand
    I've had three brown shaver chickens now for over a year and they were going well. They are free to roam the backyard all day and then they would go to their coop to roost for the night.
    Just yesterday morning I went out and found one dead. Not sure why, but I think she hadn't been laying the past few days. She was definitely the leader of the three. She would always stick up for the other two if I was holding them to check their wings.
    So when dusk came on the night after her death the other two didn't go into the coop to roost. I had to go outside and find them and guide them into the coop for the night.
    I'm guessing this has something to do with the leader chicken being gone?

    Not sure if introducing a new one to the pack would help.

    Any info about this behaviour would be greatly appreciated.

  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    I agree - it sounds like they lost their alpha and weren't sure what to do that night. I think the pecking order will re-establish itself with the remaining two particularly if you decide to add more birds. Good luck and sorry for your loss.

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