Starting my diary

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HilierWard
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Starting my diary

Post by HilierWard »

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Yes, it does look abit like a hippie camp! But this set up has evolved since June last year. The tree is actually closer to the coop than it looks and where you can see snow on the old curtain, this morning there were "dog" hairs on the top. I think the fox has jumped on it. Could be a cat I suppose, but these were very fine, undercarriage hairs. There is an outside perimeter fence (not fox proof) and I couldn't see any scraping or digging though. On the wooden fence is a infra-red motion sensor set to high pitch that we put on at night.

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This second picture is the new Eglu and run bought in readiness for my ex-barns coming on Saturday. Its not going to stay there because I cant get near the thing!

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kitla
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by kitla »

How are you getting on with the ex barn hens?
"He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
--Immanuel Kant
HilierWard
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by HilierWard »

Hi

Not very well, Im afraid. There is blood everywhere (and purple spray) - the one causing the problem will not leave the other 2 alone - constantly pecking, even when they run away or run into the coop, she goes after them. She is the only one with a full beak...
Water pistol does not work on her, she waits until I put it down then starts again. She is stopping the other 2 from feeding or drinking...
Their coop and run is in the other side of the netting, so they can see the others. I felt so sorry for the 2 that are being bullied, I let them out of the coop, so they flew over into the other side, and my 4 girls were after them like nobody's business. I know they were only trying to get away from the bully and I felt so bad having to put them back in with her...
I feel I cant cope - she will kill the other 2, Im sure of it.
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kitla
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by kitla »

Oh no! Is there anywhere you could separate the bully to on her own for a few days
while the other 2 recover & get their confidence back? If the situation gets desperate
perhaps you could get in touch with the rescue you got them from & see if they can
help rehome the bully, sometimes things will settle down, occasionally you hear of a
hen that just wont settle in a small flock. I'm speaking from other people's experiences
that I've read about on here, I've been lucky so far myself - I also have a cockerel,
they usually break up the fights.
"He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
--Immanuel Kant
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KarenE
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by KarenE »

Hi

Have you got food and water in different feeders around the run? Preferably spread out as far as possible, as it gives the bully more ground to try and cover. They will chase from food as they assert their dominance.

Are you keeping them all in the eglu run? If you can't extend the space they have (they need lots of space to get away, and hiding places too, at this stage) then you may need to separate the bully as Kitla said. Try picking the bully up and walking around with her for a while too. Ideally though they probably need more run space at this stage, with some branches and cardboard boxes as hiding places (out of sight out of mind works well with chickens) and definitely multiple food and water stations - ideally 1 per hen so they can all get enough to eat before being chased away.

I agree with Kitla - if you feel this one's too much, she may need a bigger flock with more room. Some hens cope better in smaller flocks, some cope better in bigger flocks. Normally I'd say give them time but if she's being that persistent and has already drawn blood then you'll need to keep a close eye on her and sadly may need to make a big decision if you feel things aren't settling down by the end of the week.

Good luck and shout if you need any more moral support! Intros are definitely the worst time for hen keeping (that and illnesses/deaths of course)
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly, Willow and Mango
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
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sandy
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by sandy »

Oh dear, you really are going to have to seperate her from the others I"m afraid. Please keep us upto date
The Pink Ladies..Audrey,Ingrid-Bergman,Georgia,Madeleline,Norma-Jean,Dora & Janice
The Peds…Suranne,Jennifer,
Vorky ,Blueped,Ginger,Ninger &Linky

Sunny Clucker was ere July 12-21 2012
Sunny Clucker was ere July 6 2016 to Sept 9th 2017
Sunny Clucker is here , rehomed Aug 18th 2018/
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kitla
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by kitla »

Hows it going?
"He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
--Immanuel Kant
HilierWard
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by HilierWard »

Lunchtime yesterday, all quiet as bully girl was laying. I put in an extra food bowl and I know they are all eating. Let them out (in their side) and they are definitely happier being out of the run. Still abit of pecking, but no blood. They had their first half grape each - didn't really know what to make of it >coc< .

They are so friendly and easy to handle, put them back in the run and went back to work.

Same thing last night, there was some squabbling as they went to bed, but all seemed ok this morning. See how things are at lunchtime.

thanks for all the advice and support so far
HilierWard
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by HilierWard »

Image

Here they are, the green netting is separating my 4 girlies - when they are out in their relevant sides, there is much eyeballing and neck stretching.

There's is also another food bowl in there now.

The two together are bully and bullied girl. The one in front of the Eglu is now being pecked by the other 2 and sent off.
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KarenE
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by KarenE »

Hi

Sounds like they're settling down a bit. You will find the pecking order changing around at this stage, and it looks like they have decided that poor little isolated one is the bottom hen. It's really difficult to watch but something they have to do - and you'll have it all over again when you do main intros.

I've had girls who I thought were right horrible bullies and they've settled down into the sweetest natured things (apart from at intro time when their inner raptors come back out)

if you haven't already, and you've got room, add another water source in too. Hens can dehydrate very quickly and they will likely be chasing each other away from that as well as food.

So what are you thinking so far? Keeping the bully or looking to rehome her?
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly, Willow and Mango
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
HilierWard
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by HilierWard »

They have settled down brilliantly - the bully has turned out to be lovely, curious and sweet +f+ - Im so glad I did nothing rash - horrible as it was. Havent named her yet but here is Mo - sporting a purple Mohican....
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Here is Marilyn - as we are watching Sons of Anarchy with a guest appearance of Marilyn Manson, she has been named - now with her tail up and shoulders no longer slumped.
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and here is top hen
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and finally - as bestest friends now, copying big girls in the sand pit
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thanks everyone for your support
amber66
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by amber66 »

So glad things have worked out for you with your girls, it is a worry when you have a hen bullying the others, it sounds like you have made the right decision for you.
I acquired a bully when i got a few more last year and i had to take her back the next day as i think she may of seriously hurt the others. We swapped her for another hen (a different breed) and i am so glad i did as the new one is a little sweetheart. +f+
Amber.
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kitla
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by kitla »

Oh great news! I'm so pleased for you that it worked out ok, now you can start
enjoying them. I love my exbat, Pointy, everytime I look at her I think how pleased
I am that I rescued her.I'm looking at her right now & it always makes me smile, the garden is her jungle & she's an explorer! I will look forward to reading your chicken
diary.
"He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
--Immanuel Kant
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KarenE
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by KarenE »

That's excellent news! The pecking order is so horrible for us to watch but it usually settles down within a week or so and then you can really start to see their characters come out. My little bottom hens have usually been the cheekiest so it doesn't follow at all that they are the meekest or bullied. In fact I've noticed that it's the bottom hen job to chase the cat away from the flock - all my bottom hens have done that.

Your girls look in great condition already, they're a lovely looking bunch )t'
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly, Willow and Mango
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
HilierWard
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Re: Starting my diary

Post by HilierWard »

All 3 of them have taken treats from me this weekend. They have now sussed out what babycorn is - last week they didn't know what it was. The old girls DO know what babycorn is and marched up and down the divider shouting that they did.

This is Chicken Common
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as you can see, the gardening has taken a backseat since getting the girls..

These are my "old girls" - they are a year old and the rescue girls are 18 months

From left to right - Texas, Specs, CopCop, Queenie
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