A few weeks ago, Cathy Isom did a series on chickens. Cathy adds to that today by letting you know how to manage chicken bullying in your flock. That’s coming up on This Land of Ours.
Raising chickens is a lot like raising children. It’s not enough to simply remember to feed them and provide them with plenty of water – you’ll also need to provide a nurturing environment that will them grow and thrive.
Like kids, chickens can sometimes have a tendency to bully each other. In most cases, chickens are aggressive to each other because they have a desire to establish the pecking order. Although the pecking order isn’t always at the root of chicken aggression, it is often to blame for minor issues of violence in your flock. There are many factors besides the pecking order that can cause chickens to lash out at each other. Including stress, overcrowding, boredom, sickness, broodiness, and even the breed.
Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do as a chicken keeper to help alleviate its causes and symptoms. For starters, keep a close eye on your flock. Often, situations of bullying grow out of hand before you’ve even realized there’s a problem. Check birds each day for signs of bullying, liked pulled feathers or raw spots.
Be sure to space things out so that your chickens have more room. See if you can remove some triggers for bullying by spreading your flock out a little bit more. Maybe add some entertainment. Such as a tetherball made out of cabbage. Or store-bought toys. Red lights can be soothing. And, add more feeders or waterers.
I’m Cathy Isom…