Sad chicken with tail feathers down

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chickadee11

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Sad chicken with tail feathers down
« on: June 09, 2013, 23:34 »
I've already posted for help about my new chickens pecking each other and eating feathers. This is now resolved since they have more room.

However, the one who got badly pecked is now looking very sad. Her feathers are really growing, new ones all over but yesterday she was having a dust bath and the "top" chick started to peck her, no feathers came out, it looked almost like she was grooming her, but a little too enthusiastically! The bathing chicken got up and moved but the Sussex followed her til I shooed her off. I thought perhaps she had lice but I checked her today and I can't see any signs at all, just loads of new feathers. She's black, I wonder whether the Sussex thinks the white from the new feathers is something to peck.

Anyway, black chicken looks really sad today. She stayed in the pen on her own with her tail down. I checked on them in the house tonight and she's sleeping next to the Sussex! If it were me I'd stay clear of her, but they seemed happy.

I'm worried she's not eating much even though there are two feeding and water stations.
Chick

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Sassy

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Re: Sad chicken with tail feathers down
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2013, 08:23 »
It sounds as though the Sussex is pecking at the new feathers 'spikes' that are coming through. It may help if you temporarily keep the Sussex separately but at the side of the existing run so she can still see the others and will integrate  well when she is returned. It would give the 'pecked' hen some respite until her new feathers look like feathers :)
Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted!!

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ANHBUC

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Re: Sad chicken with tail feathers down
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2013, 09:00 »
I agree with Sassy, if you can keep her out of pecking range as they can end up bald until the next molt.  It really takes it out of them producing new feathers.  If you can't find anything else wrong or other symptoms you can feed her some meal worms to help with feather production.  They often lay a softie when molting which would make her like that.
Ain't Nobody Here But Us Chickens!
Bagpuss RIP 1992 - June 2012, 1 huge grass carp (RIP "Jaws" July 2001 - December 2011), 4 golden orfe, 1 goldfish and 1 fantail fish (also huge)! plus 4 Italian quail, 1 Japanese quail, 1 Rosetta quail.

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chickadee11

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Re: Sad chicken with tail feathers down
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2013, 19:22 »
Thanks for the advice. I will try to separate them. I just gave her some mealworms but she didn't eat them, shes just stood on her own.  She looks very sad and very scared of anything that moves, including me. So sad to see :-(



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