My 18 month old red star has always looked a little ratty. She's at the bottom of the pecking order of four chickens, so she gets picked on. But they have a lot of space (100+ square feet normally, plus they get to explore a 2000 square foot yard when the weather is good). It doesn't seem like she gets constantly harassed, and I've never seen the others draw blood or pull off feathers.
Last October, she started looking like she was losing some feathers, and I figured she was molting. The other girls started molting a couple weeks later. But while the others stopped laying eggs, the red star never did. And she didn't lose many feathers at all.
Last month, she started looking like she was growing some new feathers, and she no longer wants me to touch her (she's usually the friendliest and calmest of the chickens). And now, just look at her wings:
Is that new feathers growing in, or something wrong with her feathers?
Here's another pic of her just in case it helps (her tail is pretty ratty):
I don't want her to be uncomfortable but I don't know if there's anything I should be doing, either. I miss petting and carrying around my favorite girl! She still follows me around (she likes to be close to me), but runs if she thinks I'm going to try to touch her.
I just recently cleaned the coop out completely, and check for signs of mites and other bugs regularly. All the other chickens have long since finished molting and look good:
(this just happens to be the most recent picture i have that mostly shows the other three. ignore the pokemon)
Anyone have any insight on the situation?