Saturday, 28 September 2013

Chicken trouble, part 2

Having caught Lotti and put her in the run, I went off to do the allotment chickens.

I arrived, opened up, and Henry and his Harem poured out to have a munch on the grass.  One of the harem, NoRing, launched herself at one of the saddled girls.  And a few seconds later, did it again, this time pulling a feather from the poor Girl's shoulder.

I picked up the saddled girl and checked her over.  She looked like she was moulting, but I was concerned that she was perhaps unwell, and the others were attacking her.   She looked OK, so I put her down, and none of the others gave her a second glance.

As I wateched her, I saw NoRing suddenly attack another Girl, pulling a feather from her bottom.

So, the problem was with NoRing, not with the saddled girl.  I picked her up and checked her over.  She was moulting herself, and was quite hot, but there wasn't anything obviously amiss. 

I put her back down.  Maybe she's having a crabby day?

I let OC (Other chap) know that we had a potential problem, and asked him to watch her tomorrow to see what she does.  Feather pecking can become an incurable habit,  and she might draw blood (in which case the bloodied chicken will be attacked by everyone).

If we see more of this behaviour in the next few days, I'll separate her from the others.  If that doesn't work -  well, she'll have to go.  My experience with Milly (my superb*tch chicken)  has taught me that if it needs doing, it's better to just get on with it.  We're culling some cockerels for the table shortly and, if she does carry on,  she'll join them.

Hopefully she only has her cranky pants on today.

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