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Molting or not?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

I have a couple black Plymouths that are losing feathers.  But everything I read said when molting it starts at the neck on down.

But they are losing their tail feathers and then more around the back area and not so much the neck area.  My Road Island and Comets are not losing feathers.  They are all  16 mths. old.  Is this part of molting or should I be concerned?  I had to put them all on antibiotics 2 weeks ago for a week for respiratory inf. and now this last week gave them vitamins and electrolytes.  Any help on questions would be a great help. 

post #2 of 11
Have you checked them and the coop for mites and lice? If not, you may want to and give them a good dusting with poultry dust.
post #3 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by deeschicks19 View Post

I have a couple black Plymouths that are losing feathers.  But everything I read said when molting it starts at the neck on down.

But they are losing their tail feathers and then more around the back area and not so much the neck area.  My Road Island and Comets are not losing feathers.  They are all  16 mths. old.  Is this part of molting or should I be concerned?  I had to put them all on antibiotics 2 weeks ago for a week for respiratory inf. and now this last week gave them vitamins and electrolytes.  Any help on questions would be a great help. 

16 months is the age that most birds will begin molting, so molting is certainly a possibility. However, I would check them for external parasites, just to make sure those aren't causing the feather loss. Check under the wings and hackle and near the vent for any small moving black specks (mites) or larger yellow blobs (lice). If you see any, treat by dusting with a poultry mite/lice dust or Sevin.

Breeder of Dutch bantams, Wyandotte bantams, Champagne D'Argent and American Sable rabbits.

Feel free to ask me questions about chicken/rabbit care, showing and showmanship!

 

Nature's first green is gold,

Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
 Then leaf subsides to leaf

As Eden sank to grief...
Nothing gold can stay.
--Robert Frost

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Breeder of Dutch bantams, Wyandotte bantams, Champagne D'Argent and American Sable rabbits.

Feel free to ask me questions about chicken/rabbit care, showing and showmanship!

 

Nature's first green is gold,

Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
 Then leaf subsides to leaf

As Eden sank to grief...
Nothing gold can stay.
--Robert Frost

Reply
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 

thanks will check tomorrow a.m.   Seven dust?  Like you put on plants?   Is poultry dust something you can find at a feed store.  As you can tell I am new at this so don't know all the tricks or treatments.  Just don't want to have any sick girls.  Have gone through the respiratory thing already and they are my sweet girls. 

post #5 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by deeschicks19 View Post

thanks will check tomorrow a.m.   Seven dust?  Like you put on plants?   Is poultry dust something you can find at a feed store.  As you can tell I am new at this so don't know all the tricks or treatments.  Just don't want to have any sick girls.  Have gone through the respiratory thing already and they are my sweet girls. 

Yes, 5% or 10% Sevin dust like you put on plants. I'm not sure about the poultry dust; I've never used it, but I know that other people often recommend it. For non-laying birds, you can also apply Frontline Flea and Tick spray with a Q-tip to their skin, but that isn't licensed for use on poultry so it shouldn't be used on birds producing eggs for human consumption. Another treatment is diatamaceous earth, though that is more of a preventative measure than a fix for a large infestation.

Breeder of Dutch bantams, Wyandotte bantams, Champagne D'Argent and American Sable rabbits.

Feel free to ask me questions about chicken/rabbit care, showing and showmanship!

 

Nature's first green is gold,

Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
 Then leaf subsides to leaf

As Eden sank to grief...
Nothing gold can stay.
--Robert Frost

Reply

Breeder of Dutch bantams, Wyandotte bantams, Champagne D'Argent and American Sable rabbits.

Feel free to ask me questions about chicken/rabbit care, showing and showmanship!

 

Nature's first green is gold,

Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
 Then leaf subsides to leaf

As Eden sank to grief...
Nothing gold can stay.
--Robert Frost

Reply
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 

thank you.   I was putting the diatameaous (spelling)  in there nests and in the coop and then ran out of it over a month ago.  Which week or so after is when starting noticing this.  So looks like I will need to be treating some girls.  So if 2 of them is showing this then probably all of them are so best to treat all of them right.   Thanks for the info.

post #7 of 11

Poultry dust is sometimes permethrin which is okay to use on chickens.  If using Sevin dust, stick to the 5 % only.  Tis the season for molting though, so if they don't have bugs, don't treat them.

post #8 of 11

This is the time of year adult birds are molting.  Many will be loosing the tail feathers and other feathers on body.  Most of time their is no skin exposure, most of time. 

Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it.
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Make every effort to understand your chicken's biology and the environment that supports it.
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post #9 of 11

aha! ^^^^that's what I was wondering (if they necessarily would have skin exposure with molting or if they could just lose feathers but not show balding/thinning spots)  The bottom of the coop has got "Lucille" feathers all over--like someone has lost a pillow fight.  I'll still make a check for pesties, though, in her armpits (wingpits lol), and if she'll let me her vent. last time I tried inspecting her, though, she was thoroughly offended and made a huge flap about it.  she beat me soundly in the face with her wing feathers LOL  so much for showing the kids how to hold her correctly so she wouldn't panic.  :rolleyes:

post #10 of 11
A couple of things. One kind of mite called roost mites only attack in the dark. Cowards! Evil things! They are afraid to face the light of day. Seriously, they live in cracks and such during the day and only attack at night. They will run away from a flashlight. You need to check them after dark and be reasonably quick. The vent area is a good place to check. They like the moisture there.

To go further on what Centrarchid said. Some chickens are fast molters. They dump a bunch of their feathers and really look rough. Lots of big bare spots. You’d think they’d freeze to death but they actually still handle cold weather pretty well. Then you have the slow molters. About the only way you can tell they are molting is that you see a lot of feathers around. Them being fast or slow molters has nothing to do with how fast the individual feather grows back. It has to do with how fast they lose their feathers so they can start growing them back.

Age has a bit to do with molting, but often that is a mini-molt. What causes a full blown molt this time of year is that the days are getting shorter. A lot of times pullets will skip the molt their first fall/winter, but practically every adult chicken not on artificial light will molt when the days get shorter.

Freedom is not the right to do what we want, but what we ought....Abraham Lincoln (Freedom carries responsibility)

The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right.....Judge Learned Hand  (The more sure your are that your way is the only right way, the more likely you are wrong.)

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

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Freedom is not the right to do what we want, but what we ought....Abraham Lincoln (Freedom carries responsibility)

The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right.....Judge Learned Hand  (The more sure your are that your way is the only right way, the more likely you are wrong.)

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

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