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Very shy black Orpingtons

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by JustinBroyles, Jun 13, 2016.

  1. JustinBroyles

    JustinBroyles Hatching

    Jun 6, 2016
    Hi,I have three very shy and cowardly black ops. They were recently purchased and we were prepared for our usual hour or so of shyness then all would be normal. However it's now been 25 hours and it's almost gotten worse. They refuse to defend themselves and will stick their heads in a hole or gap and take a beating from the others. Then sometimes they're left alone in their little corner of the pen and they'll cower in the corner like chick's in the brooder. They'll eat for about 10 minutes ay a time. I'm really worried about them starving or thirsting to death. It's currently 99 degrees and theyre to scared to go under a little canopy we have whenever there's no natural shade in the run (30 or so minutes at time) we put the main culprit in solitary confinement and she will stay there for a few days in the hopes the pecking order will shift around but I don't have much hope for my orps. What can I do?

  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] Well, quarantine would have been a good idea, but it's too late for that. Is there any way you can provide them with their own pen until they start to feel at home ? Then one at a time over a period of time introduce your birds to them in 'their' home pen.
  3. ChickenChaser9

    ChickenChaser9 Songster

    Feb 3, 2016
    Introducing new and smaller birds to your flock is a traumatizing experience for everyone. You need to control the environment and the interactions. Partition the area so that the new Orps cannot get bullied by the other birds but can SEE one another. You need to be doing a lot of supervising here and making sure that the different birds are able to get to know one another without being able to peck the new arrivals. There is a lot of good information on this site on how to do this. I recommend reading up on what you are doing before one of these birds gets seriously hurt.
  4. JustinBroyles

    JustinBroyles Hatching

    Jun 6, 2016
    I've had extremely good luck as far as integrating my others. This was my first bad experience but the situation has improved a lot since I made the post. It appears most of the cowering has stopped but I'll keep a close eye and will keep a quarantine in mind if need be. Theyrw mostly in different to each other minus the occasional peck but even the small,normal pecks causes one of the pullets to lose her mind with fear and start hiding beneath her rooster that we got with her. But there's been lots of progress since yesterday so I'm not as concerned. I think they'll be okay though.
  5. Sounds good.
    It took mine two months to become part of my existing flock. No real fighting. It was more like watching the bullies at the play ground.
    They will be fine.
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Too late for quarantine with this group.

    BYC Medical Quarantine Article
    Poultry Biosecurity
    BYC 'medical quarantine' search
  7. JustinBroyles

    JustinBroyles Hatching

    Jun 6, 2016
    Okay, I've had very good luck today especially after finishing the 24x8 expansion. We had been worried about overcrowding but I think we've gotten most of the problem dealt with. They're still very shy but they're being left alone which is better than beingbullied. I'll know from now on

  8. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    You've gotten some great advice already. All I can add is an article I wrote on the subject. It's linked below my post. You might pick up some additional tactics from reading about my experience integrating a rescue hen.

    Coincidentally, my new hen is a Buff Orpington. She was very shy at first, and it took about a month for her to be fully accepted by the flock. Now, many months later, she has gained so much self confidence, she's moving up the pecking order.
  9. guest21

    guest21 In the Brooder

    Oct 29, 2013
    I have all orpingtons, buffs, a blue and most recently a black. We got her at about 5 months old and she's still quite shy. She won't come to me like the others do. Maybe she just wasn't handled much before we got her.
  10. DanEP

    DanEP Songster

    May 15, 2010
    Cadiz Ky
    I've had black orps in the past and always found them to be great birds but timid. they always fit in but seems to take a little longer

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