What hap­pens dur­ing a fight

NZ Lifestyle Block - - Your Poultry -

If nei­ther gives in, it quickly blows up into a fight

The be­hav­iour of roost­ers to­wards each other of­fers clues on what you need to watch out for.

Typ­i­cally, roost­ers ‘ front up’ first, then turn side­ways and walk around each other, al­ways keep­ing an eye on their op­po­nent. They’ll some­times pre­tend to peck at some­thing. One may drop a wing and scrape it on the ground.

Even­tu­ally, the bird that thinks its dom­i­nant will stand up­right. At this point, a sub­or­di­nate rooster will usu­ally back down and slowly re­treat.

If nei­ther gives in, it quickly blows up into a fight. Roost­ers raise their neck feathers, stretch their bod­ies up­ward, and point their wings down, hold­ing them out from their bod­ies. They use the bony edge of their wings to beat each other, at­tack with their feet and spurs, and grab at feathers with their sharp beaks.

A fight will carry on un­til a rooster is se­ri­ously in­jured and un­able to fight, re­treats, or dies.

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