So, today I headed out back to take care of my harem of egg layers as usual. I opened up the coop, took out the feeder, and proceeded to fill it up.
While I was filling the feeder, I head a very distinctive "injured bird" screech...I had never heard it before, but when you hear it, believe me, you know something is wrong.
So...back into the coop, and there is my smallest girl, Tiny, laying under the ramp, getting pecked by my biggest bird, Peepers. Every time Tiny would try to stand up, Peepers would give her an aggressive peck on the head. I immediately took Tiny out of the run and put her into a cat carrier, thinking I would be putting her down.
A quick search of the issue on Backyard Chickens resulted in as many different opinions, as there were replies...not much help there!
So, over to use the forum for it's intended purpose...getting help. I emailed my gardening/canning/chicken keeper guru, and got some advice. I would trust advice from someone I know before 1000 "expert" opinions from the internet.
I got out a dog cage I have and got it set up for an infirmary coop, cleaned off Tiny with warm water in the tub, and gave her a good looking over...no real bad cuts, just a lot of missing head feathers and red skin.
So we'll be keeping her in for a while until she gets he strength back and heals over a bit...giving her some exercise on a daily basis in the bathroom, then later on outside in the chicken tractor before trying to get her rejoined with the flock.
I hope I'm not the only one using contacts here on the forum...this is a perfect example of the help we can get from our fellow forum members...
Many thanks to my Go To Guru Farmgal for the advice!
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Hey, hope things are calming down for you. I have had similar issues in my flock. Pecking systems and sick chicken syndrome can be brutal with these guys (like junior high girls). Cover the chickens head with blue coat (UFA or any livestock store) where ever it's red or bloody. Make sure you cover the hens eyes!!!! Chickens will go after bloodied (red) wounds especially. I keep my sick, but not on deaths door, chickens in the coop after covering the bloodied area up with this stuff. It colors it blue/purple and fights infection. Always try to keep the hen with the others if there is no further over the top attention given to her. It sometimes makes it worse to separate. If they keep on her-put her in a broody cage with in the coop. I can send pictures if your not sure what I'm referring to. To give her a probiotic boost wouldn't hurt either. Alittle apple cider in her water/a couple more black sunflowers seed treats. Good luck!
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