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chickens with feathers missing, etc.

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

I have had chickens for several years.  Mostly Red Star.  It seems that when they are 2-3 years old they lose their feathers and sometimes they grow back and other times (mostly) they don't.  Right now I have a couple hens that their backs are pretty bare.  My Roo has feathers missing on his neck and some of his tail feathers have fallen out.  A couple of the other hens have lost feathers but are finally regrowing them.  I am worried with winter coming on with the ones that are bald.  I am feeding Scratch and Peck feed because it is NON-gmo and no soy or corn.  It is the layer feed.  They also get to free range about half a day (have to watch for the bobcats :().  I was thinking that maybe there is not enough protein (maybe?) in the feed so I give them treats like black oil sunflower and sometimes mealworms.  I have not checked at night for 'bugs'.  I was at my niece's house a few weeks ago and her chickens (several different types) are half again bigger than any that I have ever had!  Not sure what I'm doing wrong.  I have a new flock of BO's that I keep separate and I don't want them to do the same thing...  ideas??  Thanks!

post #2 of 3
They sound like they are molting, as well as a bit bare backed from the rooster, make sure your feed has decent protein amounts, 16-20% is best, perhaps putting them on a non medicated grower for a few months, sex links are high egg producers and molting takes a lot out of them as well, so up their protein and give them time, they will continue to lose feathers and grow them back for a couple months.
Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
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Chickens, muscovy ducks, turkeys, donkeys , goats, dogs, fish, parakeets, a parrot, and a cat.

Chickens and dogs are healing to the soul.

I brake for squirrels.

Some of my birds.
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/my-wisconsin-flock
Reply
post #3 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldhenlikesdogs View Post

They sound like they are molting, as well as a bit bare backed from the rooster, make sure your feed has decent protein amounts, 16-20% is best, perhaps putting them on a non medicated grower for a few months, sex links are high egg producers and molting takes a lot out of them as well, so up their protein and give them time, they will continue to lose feathers and grow them back for a couple months.

I agree.

I set fire to the rain! Watch it pour as I, touched your face. Well it burn while I cried, because I heard it screaming out your name. And I threw us into flames. I knew that was the last time, the last time...I set fire to the rain! -Adele

 

Look at my flock page! http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bantamfan4lifes-flock

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I set fire to the rain! Watch it pour as I, touched your face. Well it burn while I cried, because I heard it screaming out your name. And I threw us into flames. I knew that was the last time, the last time...I set fire to the rain! -Adele

 

Look at my flock page! http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/bantamfan4lifes-flock

Reply
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