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I have noticed today that my big han 'isabella' is bullying two of the other girls, and being friendly with one. I had to intervene today when she kept chasin agatha up and down the run, not letting her near food, and drew blood on her comb.


What shall i do?? I got her out and tended to her injuries, which were superficial but it upset me a bit. Is this normal, only had them a week and got them all from the same place.


Cath x

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Yes its normal, they are just sorting out the pecking order.


Our big old girl Ella is the boss and she still pecks all the others to tell them who's boss every now and again, the other chooks are submissive and let her do it, although now they are wise and they run away before she can peck.


Keep an eye on the pecking and if there are any serious pecking injuries (which im sure there wont be) and they should be fine :)

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if you can, put in extra food and water holders, coop cups are good for this. Just make sure Agatha is able to eat and drink and isn't being prevented from doing so.


Let us know how it goes but hopefully things should settle in a few days.

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I seperated Isabella for a little while to let the others have a chance to eat and drink. The other three even had dust baths! But as soon as she came out things kicked off again. Its not all the time, just when agatha and henrietta catch her eye and she runs at them. Most of the time they get out of the way, but she caught agatha today and she bled a bit and lost a few feathers.


Isabella is the biggest and the only one laying so shes top hen i think. Matilda seems to be her friend and sticks close to her. But i feel sorry for the other two, its horrible to watch.


I will make sure they have time to eat and drink, and get some more feeders.


Catherine x

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I know it's awful to watch, but it is just the natural chicken way to have a pecking order. It does settle down eventually (after a few weeks). My little Toffee was bullied dreadfully to begin with, but now the girls all seem to get on fairly OK - but the pecking order is still evident.


I understand that if you get more hens, the process starts all over again. I have that joy to come!

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It is horrible to watch and it will settle down. My lot took 8 days to accept the new girl and would pull out (and eat....) her feathers.


All fine now but she is most definately at the bottom of the pecking order. When the treats bowl comes out all 4 eat together nicely, then after a few minutes the other 3 push her out and she wanders off. Or they may give her a warning peck and she crouches down submissively then wanders off. But 99% of the time they all wander round the garden together.


Just watch out for the drawing blood thing. They may get a taste for it.

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