Urgent pecking order help......

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by RachaelPul, Apr 7, 2012.

  1. RachaelPul

    RachaelPul New Egg

    9
    0
    7
    Apr 7, 2012
    I have 2 chickens that are about 10 months old. I recently brought 2 more chickens from a hatchery, they are 16 weeks old, one is quite smaller than the other. I was told that they would be ok to be put intogether, however my existing 2 are really pecking and bullying the smallest one. They team up in the coop and peck her and she is already missing her tail feathers when we got her...What should I do? I feel really awful when they peck her so I try to push them away from her, but they keep doing it...Will I need to send them back to the hatchery??????HELP.
     
  2. BuffOrpington88

    BuffOrpington88 Non-Stop

    1,395
    150
    206
    Mar 20, 2012
    No, it is just because she is new and small. Try putting some pennies and pebbles in a tin can and covering the top with duct tape. Whenever they start to chase her shake the can. They will stop and listen because they dislike the noise. Make sure the run is very interesting, you can put a tree trunk for them to jump on, roosts and stuff like that.
     
  3. Nicole01

    Nicole01 Overrun With Chickens

    5,493
    60
    268
    Mar 28, 2011
    MN
    Oh gosh no. You've got to wait now until their about 3 months old.

    What I did before they were 3 months old was put a wire dog kennel inside the coop. I'd switch out every other day who went in the kennel. After 2 weeks of that, I slowly let them out together, but watching them not allowing any pecking. By the third week they got along so well without pecking except for one, my oldest EE. I put her in the kennel for 3 days alone and that changed her behavior real quick. They were roughly the same size except my little banty when integrating.

    Now I bought 3 more babies last week. I'm waiting the 3-4 months before adding them to the flock. They are all heavy breeds and we will see how it goes. Integrating is a 3 week nightmare process, but here I'm doing it again. I think(hope) I have a roo amongst my new trio, so that will interesting.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
  4. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

    2,126
    248
    271
    Jul 8, 2008
    Fleetwood, PA
    OP said they are 16 weeks, that's between 3 & 4 months.

     
  5. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

    29,236
    6,316
    596
    May 11, 2010
    I put the newbies with in the safety of a pen to smooth out introductions

    [​IMG]


    Don't forget to put a top on.
    [​IMG]

    Another way is to put your existing birds a closure and allow the newbies to explore. Eventually you can integrate your flock, but be watchful for bullies. If you discover you have one, you can place the aggressive bird in 'time out' for a few days.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
  6. Nicole01

    Nicole01 Overrun With Chickens

    5,493
    60
    268
    Mar 28, 2011
    MN
    This is very similar how I did it.
     
  7. RachaelPul

    RachaelPul New Egg

    9
    0
    7
    Apr 7, 2012
    Thank you all for your replies, I am going to try the pennies in the can and also separating the little ones for a few weeks, until they get more comfortable. Does putting an aggressive bird in 'time out' for a few days change their personality? Also can I put 2 aggressive birds in 'time out' together or is it better to separate them?
     
  8. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

    29,236
    6,316
    596
    May 11, 2010
    Putting a bully in time out changes the hierarchy within the flock. When the bully is returned to the flock she may find herself low in the pecking order.

    Yes, you can put two bullies together but watch them. If the bullying continues you may have to cull the meanie from the flock.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by