Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Feather Pecking  (Read 3258 times)

Little Gem

  • Joined Apr 2009
Feather Pecking
« on: January 18, 2010, 12:41:04 pm »
Hi All

Please can you help me, whilst sorting and cleaning our chickens yesterday, i noticed that two of our hens have been feather pecked by their fellow hens.

They have a good size run and plenty of fresh grass to scratch in.

i have read on line that you can get "anti pecking" sprays are these any good, or any other remedies we can use to stop this from happening.

We have also read about putting vinegar in their water, can any one shed some light on this please.

Any help and tips would be appreciated.



  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Feather Pecking
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2010, 06:04:45 pm »
Are you sure it's feather pecking and not either a) a late moult, b) the hens pulling their own feathers, or c) bullying? I don't think feather pecking is usual in free renge hens - it's a vice of caged hens.


  • Joined Feb 2008
Re: Feather Pecking
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2010, 10:24:03 pm »
In my experience (although limited) feather pecking is born from boredom. My brown hens had pecked eachother almost bald while under care of their previous owner but now they have sufficient food, space, water, love and attention they don't do it at all! I give them regular "Poultry Spice" and "Poultry Drink" to boost their vitamin and mineral levels and I believe this helps a lot as even when they'd been with us 3 weeks they still had the odd nibble.

Try some poultry spice, poultry drink (turns their water a lovely shade of pink) and maybe some porridge and sardines as a treat...

Good luck!


  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Feather Pecking
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2010, 03:02:19 pm »
If it's boredom, give them some toys - a cabbage hung up or a corn cob, straw to scratch in, some branches to perch on and peck at.


  • Joined Oct 2009
  • Wiltshire
Re: Feather Pecking
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2010, 09:43:37 pm »
cider vinegar is supposed to prevent worms but you need plastic drinkers as it erodes metal


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