Anaemic chicken?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by HoneyBearB, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. HoneyBearB

    HoneyBearB New Egg

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    Jun 6, 2017
    Hi everyone. We have 4 Barred Rock chickens. All are 8 months old. We got them 4 months ago when they were 16 weeks old, and they started laying maybe a month or so later. 3 of the chickens grew bigger, redder combs and look nice and healthy, but one seems to have failed to thrive somewhat. She still has a small, dull comb and didn't really grow those dangly bits under her chin like the others did. Her legs also look quite pale compared to the others' brighter yellow legs. She seems to behave the same as the others and runs around and eats well, and I think she must be laying as there have been a few days in the past where we got 4 eggs in a day (though not recently as we are in the midst of winter here). I just noticed today that she is also losing feathers around her head - they have gone all spiky and look broken off, so maybe the other chickens are picking on her? Or is she starting to moult? It is winter here in NZ though and I thought they didn't moult in winter.

    I am very new to chickens so please excuse my ignorance, but do you think she might be anaemic and needs to see a vet? Or are some chickens just paler? She seems so well otherwise and if it was worms or mites I would have thought the others would look the same too. I would really appreciate any advice. Here is a picture of her (on the left) unnamed.jpg compared to one of the others.
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Comb color is an indicator of a chickens health and sexual maturity. When chickens molt or go out of lay the color becomes duller to indicate to any roosters that they aren't producing. They lose some of the color when they aren't feeling well too, so either case could be what's happening. Hens also will lose color in their legs as they lay and pull calcium out of their bones, it's called bleaching, and it can help to indicate hens that lay more than others.
     
  3. HoneyBearB

    HoneyBearB New Egg

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    Jun 6, 2017
    Thank you. I guess I'll just keep an eye on her for a while longer then and see how she goes. It could just be that she's gone off the lay / starting to moult. She has access to plenty of oyster shell but I'll give them some extra protein and see if that helps.
     

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