another dumb question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by connie001, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. connie001

    connie001 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    Superior WI
    I have 6 hens that I purchased as pullets that started laying in May. I have been consistently getting 5-6 eggs per day. I do not have a rooster. I have noticed that 4 of the hens have been loosing feathers in the area above the tail for about the last month. It has not affected the number of eggs being layed and they are not picking at each other. Is this a molt? As you can tell these are my first chickens. LUV Them.

    Here is a picture of what it looks like. [​IMG]

    Thanks!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. M.sue

    M.sue Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 29, 2011
    Michigan
    There is so such thing as a dumb question......
    If they aren't picking at each other it be molt otherwise have you looked for mites or lice?
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2011
  3. ruby

    ruby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Gold Hill, Alabama
    it might be a partial molt,,, are they happy? it looks like they are filling back out?!
     
  4. connie001

    connie001 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    Superior WI
    I have not seen any mites or lice, but I am unable to handle them. If I dust them with a lice powder, can I still use the eggs? Their coop and run is 8x16 and I move it once a week. I had hoped that would keep lice free. Wishful thinking.

    There are a few feathers floating around. If it wasn't for that and the fact that the feathers are white rather than red I would never have known by looking at them.
     
  5. connie001

    connie001 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    Superior WI
    Hi! I read in another post that they lose baby feathers and grow "big girl" ones; called a "soft molt". I bet that is what is going on. Makes me feel better. That seems to make sense anyway. [​IMG]

    Thanks for your help.
     
  6. M.sue

    M.sue Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 29, 2011
    Michigan
    It's probably molt and hopeful thinking too but I'd check for critters. If you can't handle them see if you can get someone to help you. You don't want to treat them if it not necessary. There are threads on here that are helpful as for what to treat them with and how to. Like I said see if you can get some help with this. As for the eggs, I think it depends on what you dust them with. A lot of people use powdered seven, some use DE, some use a combination of both and others have other methods. If critters are the case you'll just have go with the method that you most comfortable with. Good luck!

    P.S. Yes juvenile molt!!
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2011
  7. FrenchToast

    FrenchToast "Draft Apple Ridge" a Bit from Heaven

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    UP North WI
    If you are unable to handle them and want to keep lice & mites at bay you can make them a dust bath. Any cardboard box will do or a plastic dish pan.
    Put sand, DE (Diatamaceous earth (sp)) and some poultry dust.

    They will dust themselves in it.

    If you leave them in one spot long enough they may have alread dug holes in the ground were you can add the above ingredients !!

    Sounds and looks like a molt to me as well.
     
  8. connie001

    connie001 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2011
    Superior WI
    Thank you everyone. [​IMG] You were very helpful. They do have a sand dust bath and added some Poultry Dust to it. I will be moving the pen again tomorrow and will make the new dust bath using the diatomaceous earth and also add a little of the Poultry Dust to it again.
     

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