BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Feeding & Watering Your Flock › Bald chick breasts normal?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Bald chick breasts normal?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I've got two month old Easter eggers who are growing well and feathering in, but one has a completely bald breast bone from her neck almost to her vent, and part of her thighs.  She's still got some chick down on her head, but most of the rest of her body is feathered or bald.  She looks fine from a distance---I just see it if I turn her over.  Her poops look OK and she's eating and behaving well.  Her "sister" is a little bald in the same area, but not as bad.  Is this normal?  I don't see any mites or anything at all to worry about other than all that naked skin.  This is my first experience with brooding chicks, so I worry about things I don't know about.

Thanks!

post #2 of 10

If there are no mites, injuries, illness, etc, I would guess that they are just feathering out unusually slow, which isn't an issue unless you need them to be pretty tongue.png

post #3 of 10

Is the brooder too thinly bedded? She could get a bare patch from lying down on an abrasive surface.

2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 Black Stars

 

~~Chicken Behavior Article~~

Reply

2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 Black Stars

 

~~Chicken Behavior Article~~

Reply
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

No, I've got lots of pine shavings in it.  They do spend some time on a tree branch roost, but that only touches a small part of the area where she's bald.  She is a digger (woe to my garden when she goes outside!), so she might be digging herself a "nest" in the pine before going to sleep for the night.  That said, I keep an old towel under the bedding, so they're never on a really hard surface.  

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Fleabuskitty---I WANT her to be pretty, but I'll love her either waylove.gif  

Do you remember if your chicks bellies were the last part to fully feather?  That's what I'm hoping...  I just worry that I'm missing something that I should be treating.  

post #6 of 10

I don't remember which parts of my chicks have feathered out last (wings feather first every time, though), I'll have to pay attention to that with my next chicks.  All of the chicks I've ever raised have gone through an ugly stage at about two months old with bald spots, pin feathers, etc.  They're so ugly they're cute!

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

Well that does help me!  I admit to being very obsessive with these chicks.  I started with 4, but one died within 48 hours---really sad!  I'm a hospice RN and am used to being with humans when they die, but it's always harder with youngsters, whether they're human or animals.  I just now realized that another thing that's hard is that I know what to do with humans when they're ill, but have a big learning curve before being that confident with chickens.  I'm very grateful to this and other online communities for the education they provide!!!  

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

A final word on this post---for anyone going through raising chicks for the first time, as I was...

I've since realized that young chickens molt several times before growing their adult feathers.  I found this information on several reputable sites, and my experience is backing it up: 

 

The chick goes through one complete and 3 partial moults during its growth to point of lay.  Generally, complete molting occurs from 1-6 weeks of age, and partial molting at 7-9 weeks, 12-16 weeks and 20-22 weeks.  During the final molt, the stiff tail feathers grow.

 

We're either in a molt right now, or a chicken has exploded in the runep.gif, but they did grow their breast feathers in after my first alarm and are turning into beautiful hens that I'm sure will eventually hold onto their feathers for more than a few weeks... 

 

 

post #9 of 10

As a former nurse myself, I was aghast with worry when I noticed my one month old Speckled Sussex chick with a bald belly.  Poor thing.  It was bad enough she and her sister are the runts because they were obtained a week after the other 38 chicks.  But now, to have a completely bald belly was just sad and scary for me.  I didin't know what to think.  What horrible disease does she have?  Is someone pecking her belly?  What is wrong with my girl.  Now, as I've had time to do a little checking...it probably is just part of the usual chick molting and I over reacted.  Hey...It is my first batch of chicks.  And I put them in with my landlords instead of just caring for them myself.   So...I fear for thier precious little heads being with so many others.  I am a mother, and a nurse.  I am a concerned overly educated medical professional who isn't working and only has chicks to fuss about.  Thank you for sharing about molting!  I will probably be able to let them out of confinement in another day or two...maybe!  :)

Ms.Ladybug and her Layers! I had a baker's dozen of mixed breeds, but lost one to a hawk.  My girls roam freely on a 13 acre farm in beautiful Southern Oregon.  I love them and they are so much fun!  I am hooked!!!

Reply

Ms.Ladybug and her Layers! I had a baker's dozen of mixed breeds, but lost one to a hawk.  My girls roam freely on a 13 acre farm in beautiful Southern Oregon.  I love them and they are so much fun!  I am hooked!!!

Reply
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

Sometimes we nurses try too hard!  Better over than under-caring, huh?

Hope your chicks feather out quickly.  They're so pretty when they do!  

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Feeding & Watering Your Flock
BackYard Chickens › BYC Forum › Raising BackYard Chickens › Feeding & Watering Your Flock › Bald chick breasts normal?