Well, the Pinless Peeper works! It's been 48 hours with it on and Coco is a much more mellow chicken. And Ginger is becoming more confident. The two of them can eat out of the same treat bowl with no drama. Although, when Coco looks up at Ginger, Ginger is clearly still scared and moves away quickly.
But the improvement has been so quick, that I'm really hopeful we can break Coco of this naughty pecking habit.
The one area that persists in being an issue is the roosting bar. Coco hops up and just lumbers at Ginger like a gymnast down the balancing beam. She KNOWS Ginger is at the opposite end. The fearful squawks Ginger lets out just before hopping down, break my heart. But Coco usually does this twice and then it quickly gets too dark for her to see and Ginger hops up, moves as far away from Coco as she can, and settles down.
My roosting bar is one four foot long bar. I've been tempted to add two smaller pieces on either side to make it into the shape of a cross. This way, I could easily house 5 full sized birds w/ out issue. The house might be a tad small, but living where the weather is mild, my girls don't spend anytime in their house unless they are sleeping or laying. So it could work.
The real problem is my lack of handyman skills. But I suppose I should just go buy a small saw and a two by four and see what I can rig. I could probably even just put them up and let tension hold them in place and watch them to see if it's a good idea or not.
The other thing I think will help is adding chickens to the flock so that Coco can't direct ALL of her aggressive tendencies towards one bird. And I was afraid I was going to have to wait till February to pick up more chicks. But I called the local feed store today and when she said they just received a box of Buff Orpingtons in, well, I quickly set up the brooder and headed over the hill.
So in my garage right now are four baby Buff Orpingtons. OMG, can we say cuteness? I only plan on keeping two. But I wanted to be sure I GOT two girls out of the deal. And already, I have my suspicions. Stick your hand in there to adjust the feeder or temperature and one will come right up and peck at my hand. Hmmm, not a good sign. More to come on the babies. Check back soon.