Farming forum: Hen being shunned ?

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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
Aug 8, 2016 10:48 PM CST
I have 8 hens of various breeds. When we returned from a week-long camping trip, I noted only 7 hens in the coop that night and thought I had lost one to a predator. The next morning, there she was in the chicken yard. For the next 2 nights, she was again missing from the coop after the door closed. I wandered around the chicken yard with a flashlight, but couldn't find her. I figured she was broody and setting on a stash of eggs somewhere. She is my largest hen and unable to fly over the fence. Tonight she was again missing from the closed coop but this time I was able to find her (she's white) snoozing at the foot of a vervain plant with no eggs under her. Much to her loud dismay, I picked her up and put her in the coop. After a few minutes I checked back and she was kind of huddled on the floor, not sharing the roost with anyone. Is she being shunned?
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
porkpal
Aug 9, 2016 6:12 AM CST
Is she too heavy to get up on the roost? I have had a few hens who seemed to be disliked by the others, but they were usually shy and reclusive from an early age. Is this a new problem? (In other word, I don't know.)
Porkpal
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
Bonehead
Aug 9, 2016 9:36 AM CST
New development. She's always hung out with the rest of the flock and shared the roost, although now that I think about it, she was usually kind of a lone ranger on the roost - all the others were usually clustered together and she was off by herself at the opposite end. Maybe she has just gotten too heavy to get up on the roost - it's end of summer and in addition to free-feed crumbles, they have plenty of greens in the chicken yard and I usually also let them free range for a couple hours. I'll just monitor it I guess and keep tossing her back in the coop. Otherwise, she will likely get eaten by some night predator. I'll try to watch the evening 'return to coop' shuffle and see if she is just missing the automatic door closing, or if the flock is preventing her from getting in, or what the deal is. Not this evening, though, we'll be gone. Kind of a mystery...
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
porkpal
Aug 9, 2016 11:06 AM CST
Our loners have usually shown signs of peer abuse. Any missing feathers?
Porkpal
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
Bonehead
Aug 9, 2016 3:03 PM CST
Yes, I always notice white feathers here and there, although she isn't so beat up that she's down to skin anywhere. She's also my only hen with 'bad butt.' I'd forgotten how potty humor can affect little boys, and when a 4 and 6 year old were visiting and asked what was wrong with the white hen, I just answered, 'Oh, that's Bad Butt Karen,' which totally cracked them up.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Keeper of Poultry Farmer Roses Raises cows
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
porkpal
Aug 9, 2016 4:37 PM CST
A friend's kids used to think the best joke ever was: "Guess what?" _ "Chicken butt!" I still don't get it...
Porkpal

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