Friday, August 20, 2010

Red Star Roosters and a Lame Hen

This last week, Mike and I went camping. The morning after we arrived home, I found one of our Delaware hens laying on her side on the floor of the coop. I went to investigate, and found that she couldnt walk. I placed her on the shelf above the other chickens, and gave her her own individual water dish and food. She appeared to be very thirsty and I was pleased to see that she was eating and drinking. After checking on her throughout the day, I noticed that she was still limping around, but with some help, she was able to stand. Although, I have noticed that the only way she can seem to keep her balance is by stepping on one of the feet. It seems very strange. She doesnt seem to have improved at all today and after going to close up the coop, I found a stupid Red Star Rooster beating her up! That little jerk.

Now, this was the side of the coop housing 'the meaters', those that we are raising for meat. So, after witnessing the assault on this poor defenseless hen, I decided to move her to the pet chicken side. I put her in a roost with some water and fresh straw under her. Does anyone have any additional ideas about treatment or any advice? All our chicks have been vaccinated for Marecks, so, I have ruled that out.. i just dont know what else to do. If she pulls through, I am going to make her a pet chicken and name her Gretchen.

On another note, I have noticed that our Red Star roosters are pretty aggressive! When I was trying to rescue Gretchen from the wrath of that mean rooster, I got my arm pecked really hard! The little jerk broke skin and only let go, when I smacked him.  I have noticed that the red star roosters are much more aggressive than the delaware roosters. We will not be keeping any of the red stars for breeding after this batch.

Also, after we arrived home from the honeymoon (that blog will come soon), we decided that the meaters were big enough to begin free ranging.


I think they really love it. 

4 comments:

Callie said...

Congratulations to you both on you wedding. Great photos.

Hope the hen is better and the the problem is lack of water and food. It does sound like Mareks.

Love that grassy field.

John Gray jgsheffield@hotmail.com said...

could she have scaley legmite???

Kelsi said...

I checked her out pretty well and didnt find any bugs or anything. She ate this morning. Poor little girl.

Sally said...

I noticed that my red star roosters are also extremely agressive towards the poor hens! One of my barred rocks got her comb torn by a duo of relentless red stars. My chickens are all supposed to be pets, but I may need to butcher these roosters.