She is absolutely in love with our chickens! She and I have so much fun with them, it is an adventure we enjoy together. I look forward to what the next year will bring.
Minnesota! - Page 1846
This is one of my first hens I purchased back in April last year. We call her Sassy Pants. I've been noticing that her tail looks like it's going more vertical and she is looking thinner feathered on top. I'm not sure if she is an ameraucana or a buff, we ordered two of each and they all look alike to us. Egg color is all similar too. Now either she has a feather issue going on or she just has weird feathers. Any ideas? I zoomed in and you can see all these little shimmery feathers. They look like baby feathers almost but they are all over her top to her tail. They have been becoming more noticeable. Could she be molting? Is that what molting looks like? Never experienced it before so not sure what to expect. Thanks for input!
Do yours look like this when they molt?
Depending how many chickens you have, the numbers add up quickly! in the peak of the fall we were picking 38-40 eggs a day. with the winter we are down near 20-25. Some of our girls are just finally molting, which is wierd but they are doing it very very quickly which is probably a good thing.
This has definitely been a strange year for plant and animal behaviors. But the good news is that fast molters are often better layers! ;)
@athalia17 That just looks like treading from your rooster. The feathers at the base of the tail and on the back get torn up sometimes from them mating with them, and it makes the main tail feathers stick up a little higher because the ones that usually are weighing them down to a lower angle are missing. When a bird molts, the main tail feathers are usually the last to drop out. Sometimes I see hens with just one feather poking up from their tail and it just cracks me up.
You can get or make hen saddles to cover their backs to prevent that from happening. I figure it is a natural thing, so as long as they aren't getting injured, I haven't used saddles in a couple of years. I might break down and make some if I can get my sewing room organized and sorted out though.
Some hens never lose a feather, others are barebacked by March 1st. I believe that some hens just don't hold their feathers in their skin as tightly. Some will say, "It's the rooster's favorites that are bare backed." I don't believe it. I see roosters going to town on some that hardly lose any feathers at all. You won't see as many marks on their backs either. If roosters have spurs that are long enough and sharp enough to cut or slash into the girls, look on their sides and under the wings because that is where I see them happen if they happen to get cut from them. Young roosters are stupid as rocks. They have no idea what they are doing and will grab a hen or pullet by the head and drag them around and not know enough to mount them. I have had at least one hen I know was killed by inexperience young roosters who got too rough. I went in the pen to feed them, got to the other end of the building and heard the whole flock going crazy, walked down through every pen again and found the bird I was just looking at alive, dead at my feet. I knew the roosters in there were idiots and saw how they would treat the hens before, so I am certain they broke her neck. I can't say as any others have had that happen, thank goodness.
Some roosters I never see breeding then set eggs and they are all fertile, so it has nothing to do with whether you see them.
I raise rabbits too, and I never catch a doe in the nest feeding her babies, yet, they always will have full bellies.
That is just cracking me up! A hen will do what a hen will do!