fighting chickens.

Discussion in 'Behavior & Flock Management' started by rob, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. rob

    rob New Member

    2,300
    0
    0
    i am new to this chicken keeping malarky so i have a question.
    i have 3 pullets a silkie a light sussex and a clydach clocker. two of them have been fighting the last couple of days, nothing much just facing off to each other and a quick squable. is this normal? the birds have been together for about 4 days.
     
  2. Berta

    Berta New Member

    27
    0
    0
    Sounds like they are working out a pecking order, totally normal.
     

  3. rob

    rob New Member

    2,300
    0
    0
    i thought thats what it might be, thanks for the reassurance.
     
  4. LdMorgan

    LdMorgan New Member

    31
    0
    0
    Yah--sounds normal. If you have space, I'd recommend you add another pullet. Chickens count to three real well, and seem to obsess over the pecking order when there are only two other contestants. A flock of four or more will usually be a lot calmer.
     
  5. JackAubrey

    JackAubrey New Member

    37
    0
    0
    Yep, they are trying to establish the pecking order. Office politics ,even in the chicken coop ! JA
     
  6. piglett

    piglett Senior Member

    1,466
    0
    0
    get a few more, it's hard to have too many :)
     
  7. Apyl

    Apyl New Member

    3,157
    0
    0
    I agree with the othe posts, its just pecking order. Plus you need more lol.
     
  8. weirdo

    weirdo New Member

    11
    0
    0
    Is it typical to have them fight?
     
  9. rob

    rob New Member

    2,300
    0
    0
    im realy tempted to get another one to make it a nice round 4 :)
     
  10. LdMorgan

    LdMorgan New Member

    31
    0
    0
    Chickens will squabble from time to time as whoever is higher on the pecking order defends their status from upstart interlopers.

    They'll also squabble over food, when stealing nice treats from each other.

    They almost never have knock-down drag-out fights, roosters excepted.

    However: you have to be careful adding new hens to the flock. Especially if they are younger or smaller. The other hens will gang up on the new one and beat it into submission--as low hen on the totem pole.

    The problem is that if the new hen is beat up too much, the others will simply beat it to death so they can eat it. They are velociraptors, you know.

    The thing to do with a new hen is pen it right beside the flock so they can get used to seeing each other, and then let them mingle later.

    Generally, you want to pull any hen that shows red meat from an injury out of the flock before the hens gang up on it and kill it. Like sharks, they go for blood.
     
  11. piglett

    piglett Senior Member

    1,466
    0
    0
    you never want to just add 1 pullet
    it will never become part of the flock
    if you add birds 2 is good, 3 is better



    good luck
    piglett
     
  12. Roslyn

    Roslyn A Round American Woman

    735
    0
    0
    Yes, squabbles will happen. I have even seen one hen sitting on top of another holding her head to the ground. Just like a rooster mounting a hen. It's a "I'm the boss" technique.

    When I had my very first flock of mixed breeds of hens, in the before time, long, long ago. :) Well, the number one hen (of 9) was a Light Brama. She was a huge hen who ate a lot, laid very little, and walked around being very important. Well. She was hit on the road and the flock went through a new pecking order arrangement. Her second in command at that time was a Silver-Laced Wyandotte named Flash. Flash took control of the flock with an iron wing. Two nights after Snowballs' demise I watched Flash standing at the coop door pecking each and every hen as they walked in the coop for the night. It was just the funniest thing.

    The following year I added 6 new girls and Flash was the leader to keep the new girls out and away. Of the 6, 5 didn't have any problem with Flash's power, the other one, Jo-Jo, a cheeky RIR kept defying her authority. I don't think Jo-Jo wanted any kind of control, but she just didn't want to be bossed around. I was in the house when I heard the SCREAMING of chickens outside and I went running out to see what was going on. Flash was on a screaming and fighting Jo-Jo. She was sitting on her back with a beak full of feathers and poor Jo-Jo was pinned to the ground.

    Flash made her point, and Jo-Jo gave her a wide berth from that point on. Usually I would have broken them up, but when it's politics it's best to just stand aside and let them work it out. Up to a point. If it endangers the hen I may keep them apart etc, you have to watch them and decide.
     
  13. missouri100

    missouri100 bantam

    11
    0
    1
    After you have those chickens for a while you will realize they are really one of the more brutal animals - - at least to each other. They certainly like routine.

    It is not hard to imagine they are "modern" predatory dinosaurs. Let a live mouse go in the coup or run and all hell breaks loose. When and if one catches it then they fight over it! If nothing else it is entertaining.
     
  14. rob

    rob New Member

    2,300
    0
    0
    they seem to have sorted out the pecking order now.
     
  15. cl_dewey

    cl_dewey Junior Member

    21
    0
    0
    Just a side note...sometimes getting a rooster will help this. The male presence can calm the bossy girls, and he will theoretically police their activity so they don't fight too much. Of course all flocks are different...
     
  16. eylan

    eylan Junior Member

    5
    0
    0
    Wow Who knew chickens could be so crazy. Lol I've seen a few arguments. Mostly hitting their chest together and a stare down lol
     
  17. piglett

    piglett Senior Member

    1,466
    0
    0
    i ended up with 2 little silky girls as part of a deal i made for some unwanted layers
    i was after some cash (extra feed money is always good)
    & i also wanted some roosters for my meat pen
    for whatever reason the buyer thought i also couldn't live without 2 young silky pullets
    they are too small to eat so i thought i would keep em to brood me some eggs

    well to make a long story short , all they did was hide from the other birds
    i was worried about them not drinking & eating enough so i put em in with my meaties for a month
    this put a little weight on em & now they are back with the rest of the laying flock
    just today i see 1 is out & about (up on top of the wood pile) so maybe soon the other will get over being so shy & enjoy their time with the big girls




    piglett
     
  18. Energyvet

    Energyvet New Member

    4,193
    0
    0
    Not to burst your bubble, but I think Silkies as a rule as lousy brooding hens. Might want to rethink your plan. Silkies make good pets and show chickens.