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BeckyBoo

pecking order? How long does it take again?

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I know I've read it before, but this morning Lulu has a little bald patch, but a little more concerning, it looks like she's taken a hit in her right eye. There's no blood on her face (bit bloody on her head) but her eye is a bit closed and it looks like it's irritating her a bit. I'm not too worried about it cos we'll keep an eye on it ( :roll: ) and bathe it if necessary, but how long does it take before they've all worked out where they are in the grand scheme of things? Don't like seeing any of them getting bullied - Bertie Bird read this and take note you big bully!!! :x:wink:

 

Mrs B

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This sounds nasty. Mine have been pretty vicious to each other, but the only blood I have seen is on combs, and as combs bleed easily I try not to worry about it.

 

The pecking order can take up to a month to settle down. (My little ones are still not accepted properly after three weeks, but it is getting better.)

 

If the hens are confined in the same run most of the time and the new ones are a lot smaller than the older ones, I personally would fit a bumper bit to the hen who is doing the worst attacks. (If they free-range, it is a different matter, as they can't be cornered so easily.)

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thanks Gallina, problem is they all arrived at the same time so none are particularly younger or older, and because they only arrived yesterday I'm very reluctant to let them out to free range yet.

 

When I say blood on her head I mean she's got a little bald patch and it's red where the feathers are out - to be honest my Gingernut Ranger arrived from Omlet in a similar state altho it was already healing.

 

She's tucked herself away in the rossting bit of the cube so she's safe at the minute -I'm just off to put her a little bowl of food and water in in case she doesn't want to come out to eat.

 

Hope I'm doing the right thing?

 

Mrs Bertie

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We added two new youngsters to our one older (grieving) hen. She was immediately accepted as top chook by the little ones, but still continued to bully them for a good 1 - 2 weeks. Completely pointless as they were utterly subservient to her.

 

She didn't do them any physical harm (her beak had been trimmed before we got her), but they were completely terrified at first, and this was really sad to watch. I had to give them respite by letting her out to free-range alone - their relief was palpable, and they needed to eat!

 

I noticed that the bullying was worse when I was present, or when she could see me looking, so I tried to avoid her seeing me watching them!

 

I think that giving her food & water in her safe place is good. Its very early days, so I wouldn't let them out yet - I think you just have to let it run its course, and keep an eye on it as you say.

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If they are all much the same size it will probably sort itself out more quickly: I had forgotten that you got all the hens together (there are a lot of people introducing old and new hens together, and that is much harder).

 

Introductions are easier in the cube than in the eglu, as there is more room for chickens to stay apart. I expect it will all sort itself out by tomorrow.

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Just to say that Lulu's eye is completely open again - must have just happened hen we first saw her, just a small mark in the corner of her eye which we'll watch. She seems fine now, we've given them some dried mealworms (don't THEY stink?! :shock::shock: ) which they loved, and they're already eating out of our hands!

:lol:

Lulu made a bid for freedom but I'm very pleased to say I caught her and took the opportunity for a little cuddle which she didn't mind too much.

 

CHICKENS ARE GREAT!!! :dance::dance::dance::dance:

 

Mrs B

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