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Soup Dragon wrote (see)
Doing a boing to ask if anyone can give me any tips for pecking. One of my girls is getting badly pecked by another. I've tried 2 types of antipeck spray but it doesn't help and causes the bird distress when I try and spray her. I then tried Vic vapour rub on the suggestion of another chicken keeper but that didn't work either. She seems fine in herself and just sits there perched content while the other pulls her feathers out! I've heard about some purple spray/dye but not sure where I get it from. Any help appreciated - ta.
What two sprays have you tried so far? I've had great success with one called Ukadex - officially the worst smelling thing in the known universe. To minimise distress to birds, do whatever you need to do to them at night, and as much as possible, in the dark. They're much quieter and more docile when the lights are out. Beak bits work too but can be fiddly to apply. If you're isolating, best to isolate the pecker and not the peckee, as removal of a bird usually drops it down the pecking order, and if it was getting picked on before, it'll be even worse once it's re-introduced to the flock.
Also, do you know that feather pulling/eating can be a sign of poor nutrition in the flock? Sometimes the birds are doing it to try to make up nutrients that are missing in their diet. What are you feeding them? Sometimes with hens, a varied diet with lots of treats isn't any good, as they fill up on low-nutrient 'junk' and don't eat as much layers feed as they should, thereby missing out on stuff like calcium. Worth a thought...
r-w-d - thanks thats brilliant advice. I'm feeding them layers mash but they do get loads of treats as well. They get meal worms, left over potato pealings/pasta/rice etc, dandilion leaves, sometimes I hang a fat ball in the run for them to jump up and peck at. Then they have the run of the garden in the afternoons when I'm around and dig up for worms and grubs and things. They are spoiled chooks so I wil have to re-think that.
Quick update - I've made my chooks work for their treats by putting meal worms in a ball that they have to roll around to get them out, and they get it at the end of the day. They have layers mash as well as pellets during the day (they seem to prefer pellets so thats what they will get from now on) and I've cut out the pasta and rice tit-bits, and put cider vinegar in the water. So I know they are getting a good diet but the pecking continues.
I've just got from the internet some violet spray and what is meant to be the mother of all pecking sprays so I'll report back. Fingers crossed.
Chicken sprayed with what is the most evil smelling substance known to man, beast and bird. Its a mixture of stale cigarettes and urine and it lingers. My whole garden stinks. The poor bird is now sat in the hen house sulking. She smells so bad that the others won't go into the house at all, just poke their head in and make a hasty retreat. I hope we haven't overdone the spraying.
Feathers growing back.
My eight hens are:-
Spot the theme
We have decided to get 2 more chickens; one of them is a Gingernut Ranger and the other is a Miss Pepperpot !
My two chickens are called Dora and Teri (short for Teriyaki, strangely). I did have Nessa (short for Vanessa - one of Granny Pig's - from Peppa Pig - chickens' names) but she died. Massive eggs, small bum
Lovely chooks carterusm.
What is it about chickens names that are so individual. I suppose it shows how much character they have. If you don't keep chickens you wouldn't understand.
We have got 2 ex batteries left (Winnie and Gretel) that have not laid for a few months now so I think thats them done with. The 2 new ones (Jezebel and Harriet) are going to be laying 6/7 times a week and big brown ones !
How many chucks do you have Soup Dragon and what are their names ?
I've got 3 chucks. Had them just over a year and they are called Brenda (top of the pecking order and Brenda is Private Eye's name for the Queen), Amy (after Amy Johnson) and Mavis (for no reason at all its just a name that came to us). Amy is bottom of the pecking order poor thing and Mavis has the most character. She is white and the other 2 are brown Rhode Islands. She likes to get up to high places such as the back of chairs and then struggles to get down again in a huge clumsy flap lol. But I love them all. They lay an egg each every day.