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So, I put in the recest litter with my older girls. It was interseting to watch the kin interact. The new litter's mother, Juliet, and her mother, Dakota, staredd each other down and you could pretty much see the position of power go from Dakota and Juliet. In my ice, it is like a pack, except that it is a matriach society. There is the matriach or alpha, then the beta and 3rd females, and so on. Has anyone else expierienced this?
 

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Yep! Nibbler used to rule the roost out of my mice alongwith her best friend and sister Sally, then it was Tails and Daisy and finally Fidget the coward. It's odd watching them boss one another around in the ranks sometimes and working out who gets what jobs! Tails was defender, Daisy and Nibbler were packers and Fidget was the official fur washer :lol:
 

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....When Good Mice Go Bad....

Sometimes, in my group cages I'll have anywhere from four up to ten or twelve in a big tank, and the number depends on how the meeces are related. Sometimes, it makes more sense, space-wise to consolidate two small groups in one tank, but I've leaned that I need to work some social engineering if I want to put two dominant does together along with their daughters. The family unit is cohesive, and each doe will try rule the 'roost'. This also sets the stage for conflict between the young ones, and at it's worst, the older does will attack each others young ones.

But then, with critters with brains the size of a half split pea, it might devolve into general mayhem, with no regard to relation whatsoever. That's when I remove all the accessories, including the water bottle, for a little while. They usually calm down in twenty or thirty minutes. On a few occasions I had to remove just one individual doe who started harassing another for no good reason I could figure out, and those two does finally ended up with just one other doe. I have one slinky little tri settled with one of my great yellow whale girlies; too big to be pushed around, and probably no fun as the big fat mousie can't run away. (The BFM may try to run...I don't know whether that's funny or sad or both... :roll: )

I usually have a mixer first, with lots of treats and fresh timothy. Once they have frolicked through the straw together, they loose some of the innate reserve and defensiveness, and play together nicely. Timothy is one of my favorite items for sweetening both the air and the dispositions of all involved.
 
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