Bullying hen

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Frizzle1

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Bullying hen
« on: February 01, 2022, 15:44 »
Hi everyone I need some advice on a seriously bullying silkie. I know Iíve never came across it in all the time Iíve kept hens all of twenty years. The one that is causing the problems is the most docile silkie Iíve ever had but suddenly turned a different hen altogether. Space food and everything is right for them but today I had to separate her in a cage but worrying about having to put her back with the others.
Tried all the sprays there is but with no luck. I know there are ways of separating for a while but how do I start Iíve got no idea

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New shoot

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2022, 11:19 »
It is not easy when you get an Atilla the Hen.  You have her welfare and that of the rest of the flock at odds with each other.

If you can keep the bully isolated for a few days it will allow the others to regroup and make them more resilient to attack.  If she starts again the second she gets back, take her out again for a few more days.

If she carries on despite isolation periods, you might have to look at a more permanent separate set up for her.  Silkies are quite small, so a rabbit hutch with a run beneath should be OK and you can pick these up second hand fairly easily.   If she could see the others it would help, but you would have to monitor her and see if she was happy on her own or pining.

Other than that it would be rehoming, but you would have to be honest about the reasons to warn whoever was going to take her, or culling as a last resort.

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Frizzle1

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2022, 11:46 »
Thanks for that she has been separated now for two days but have tried again today but so far still no luck. Now put her back again in view of the others but the one she pecks wonít go near her. All the anti peck sprays have never worked. Think maybe I should take her away so she canít see them for a week but it doesnít seem fair to me but maybe that will work not sure

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grinling

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2022, 14:30 »
I would pick up the one who was more aggressive and tuck them under my arm and walk around and sit with her. I had to do that several times, spring time makes hens do strange things.

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Frizzle1

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2022, 14:42 »
I have tried this four times this week half hour one day but still no luck. Put her out again this morning and she seems more violent than ever loads of white fluffy Silkie fur all over the grass

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grinling

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2022, 09:12 »
She wants to be the dominant hen, which is fine if you do not have one. Some have used beak clips, but I have not. If you do isolate her, can you do it within the housing area so she can look out? I was always the cockerel figure.
I often repeated my pick up routine every few days, sometimes a fewtimes a day, but mainly in spring. I would also be holding her, chatting to her and walking around the garden, but not stroking her, as a cockerel would. I would also give somemixed corn to the others when doing so.
Have they got things to entertain them, cabbages, pumpkin etc? No chickens are allowed out to free range so  adding entertainment is good. Mine loved sweetheart cabbage.

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Debz

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2022, 09:50 »
You're silkie is better than me.  I have new girls and one was getting a bit of grief so I sprayed her with anti-peck.  Got some on my hands, didn't realise and later touched my mouth.  It tastes vile!  Seems to have put my pecking hen off the notion and I can understand why. :D

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Frizzle1

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2022, 09:03 »
Iíve tried by giving them things to do even walked around with her. Pecking spray is not working. I canít believe sheís doing it itís not the pecking order which I would fully recognise as Iíve had them over two years itís strange because the one sheís doing it to is the dominant one. She is so docile each time one of the others would go near her she would crouch down and squeak. I will try and let her out today and carry her a bit more but even if it does work I donít trust her at all when it comes to leaving them

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2022, 09:20 »
It could be hormones running riot.  Grinling is right about spring making hens do strange things  :wacko:

The best bet would be to isolate her within sight of the rest and give her a bit of time.  How long has it even going on so far ?

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Frizzle1

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2022, 10:00 »
Nipped it in the bud so I would say a week

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Re: Bullying hen
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2022, 12:15 »
It can take 2-3 weeks for them to adjust to hormonal changes.



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