Why did this happen? Advice please?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by lizi.beth915, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. lizi.beth915

    lizi.beth915 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 6, 2011
    Harford County, MD
    Hi everyone! I am a new member to BYC, with not much experience. This is my first flock, and we literally just put our girls out in the coop a few weeks ago.

    I was shipped a box of day-old chicks back in June that consisted of: 2 Buff Orphingtons, 2 Ameracaunas, 2 australorps, 2 barred plymouth rocks, and 2 anconas with 10 random males thrown in the box for heat. (we later went back to the website we ordered from & identified them as california whites?) 2 of the males and one of the Anconas died in transport, so that left me with 17 chickens. I could stare at those cute little fuzzballs for hours and never get bored, but we were still unsure what to do with all of those roosters. Our neighbor, who has had a flock of her own for years, recomended auctioning them off, and we planned on doing so until they were about 4 weeks old...
    when... a few of the roosters attacked my ameracaunas! The first one I caught in the middle of the attack and saved her, stopped the bleeding on her back, put antibiotic cream & dressed the wound, & put her in a separate box with food & water and all that good stuff... only for her to pass a few days later of some mysterious illness? [​IMG] (her crop was filled with air when I found her?) The other, I unfortunetly never had the chance to save, as she was dead when I found her. [​IMG] I discovered soon after that they ripped up the backs of both of my australorps, as well. Needless to say, those roosters didn't stick around for much longer... So now I'm down to 7 hens and all has been well for a few weeks. The australorps are now recovering and their feathers are even starting to grow back in.

    Does anyone know what could have caused those attacks, anyways? I know they were being fed enough, as I literally JUST filled the feeders an hour before the first attack happened. Was it because Ameracaunas are too docile a breed? I know that there were too many roosters, but wouldn't you think the roosters would attack each other & leave the hens out of it, or am I wrong?

    I fell in love with Ameracaunas as soon as we saw them... but I'm not sure if I should get anymore (or roosters, even) if the same thing is going to happen again.

    Any help, comments or opinions would be appreciated.

    Thanks, Liz.
     
  2. Yashar

    Yashar New Egg

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    Oct 18, 2010
    Oak Hill, New York
    What size area are they in?

    Oh, by the way....[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2011
  3. Gullygarden

    Gullygarden Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Even girls will get into the serious pecking if they are too crowded and bored. Do they have plenty of space?
     
  4. lizi.beth915

    lizi.beth915 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 6, 2011
    Harford County, MD
    They were in a 5x3' brooder box my dad built, where the first one was attacked, then we moved them to the coop which is about 5 1/2 x 8 x 6' where the rest of them were attacked. Was it because they didnt have enough space?
     
  5. Yashar

    Yashar New Egg

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    Oct 18, 2010
    Oak Hill, New York
    Was it because they didnt have enough space?

    Probably.​
     
  6. ChickenFanatic447

    ChickenFanatic447 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 30, 2011
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    [​IMG]

    Roosters are just aggressive sometimes, it's hard to prevent them from roughing up another chicken at one point or another. I'd always keep roosters to a minimum honestly, 10 was a bit excessive for the amount of females being shipped and was bound to end up in some trouble. 1 Rooster for every 7 hens/10 hens is what my cousins go by in the farm areas, but this may because they've had awful experiences with them in the past.

    I'd just keep an eye on the hens, let them freerange a little in your yard if possible and do your best to keep them happy and going. Roosters are territorial sometimes and will kill chickens to assert dominance/show that an area is there land.

    Sorry for not being of much help!
     
  7. Gullygarden

    Gullygarden Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do think you will need more room for them, especially as they get older. I use an electric mesh run so mine can come and go from the coop even when I'm not there. They were big enough to be ok with it at about ten weeks. Picture on my byc page. good luck!
     
  8. BrattishTaz

    BrattishTaz Roo Magnet

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    Tampa Area, Florida
    I had this happen with my last batch of chicks. One was killed and two were badly injured. I was told to increase their protein and give them more space. I started letting them freerange more during the day. This stopped the brutal attacks but there was still some bickering going on (turns out most were roos). I finally gave them to my little adult roo who nipped the picking in the bud. He brooded them by himself from the time they were 6 weeks until now 20+ weeks. He is still finding the little monsters food and plucks tail feathers out of any bullies. [​IMG]
     
  9. lizi.beth915

    lizi.beth915 Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 6, 2011
    Harford County, MD
    Okay. Stupid roosters. We didnt even order them.. they just came because we didnt want to pay extra for them not to. & then my family got too attatched to them once they got here to do anything about it until it was too late... But anyways, thanks for your help :) I guess there's nothing I can do about it now but learn from my mistakes. We did add an 8 foot run off of the coop. That should help, right?
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2011
  10. chickens? not yet

    chickens? not yet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]

    from Kingman, Az.
    Hope things get better for you, lossing little ones is very hard, I feel for you.
     

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