Are carrots turning my chickens' feathers orange?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by liz_s, Aug 4, 2010.

  1. liz_s

    liz_s Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 16, 2010
    Washington State
    Hello!

    I have two white chickens that occasionally have feathers that turn orangey-yellow. They aren't molting, but I don't know much about the biology of feathers, so I'm not sure if diet can affect fully-grown feathers... The girls certainly eat a lot of carrots. The last time this happened it went away, so I'm wondering if maybe they're just dirty?

    Thanks for your help!

    Liz
     
  2. NoseyChickens

    NoseyChickens Feathers On The Ground

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    It's possible. From what I have been told too much corn can do the same thing. I was adding some vitamin electrolite powder to my water (it was yellow) and my white birds turned a bit yellow.
     
  3. Braclin

    Braclin KY Chicken Farmer

    Jul 5, 2010
    Owingsville,KY
    Never heard of carrots turning feathers. Sounds like they have just rolled in something.
     
  4. justbugged

    justbugged Head of the Night Crew for WA State

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    It is possible. Carrots contain carotene and it has been know to turn peoples skin orange. It takes a lot of carrots to do that.
     
  5. liz_s

    liz_s Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 16, 2010
    Washington State
    Thanks for the opinions! [​IMG]

    I'm not really concerned, just curious. It's quite possible that it's from their environment; they love to bathe in the mulch in my flower beds (I have yet to put up fences). I got them some peat moss to roll around in, so I'll be curious to see if that gets rid of the issue. They do love their carrots, so I'll keep giving them those regardless. Silly chickens!
     
  6. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

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    My Coop
    Quote:Hi liz_s, just out of my own curiosity, do your birds eat the carrots raw or do you cook them? Mine haven't shown much interest in raw carrots and I've been wondering if they would like them if cooked.
     
  7. schmije

    schmije Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 25, 2008
    Peoria, IL
    Quote:I was surprised when I saw this post, because my chickens also have no interest in carrots - raw or cooked. I've given them pea soup with ham and cooked carrots, and they inhaled the pea soup and ham but left all of the carrots! I thought for sure they'd eat them cooked.
     
  8. fiberart57

    fiberart57 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I didn't think that fully-grown out feathers are vascular; that they have a blood supply to the ends of the feather. This means that the coloring from the carrots will not reach into the feathers, which like our hair, won't change color once it's grown out. The carotene in the carrots may affect their combs and legs, but I don't think that it would go so far as to get to turning their feathers a different color.

    Mary
     
  9. allieloveschickens

    allieloveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I bet carrots could change their feather color, my little brother ate so much mashed yam as a baby he looked like an oompa loompa! Plus Flamingos are pink because of their diet, why not chickens [​IMG]
     
  10. alaskachick

    alaskachick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2010
    Wasilla, Alaska
    Wow.. My chickens absolutely dislike carrots. I've tried them cooked, chopped, raw and they won't touch them. I gave them some left over beef stew one day and they ate it all up except left the carrots!
     

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