Are my chickens skinny?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Heidi T, Jan 20, 2014.

  1. Heidi T

    Heidi T Out Of The Brooder

    29
    2
    26
    Dec 10, 2013
    How do you tell if a chicken is skinny? I have a flock of egg layers. Two Domineques, two Red Sex Links, and two Orohingtons.(sp?) They're not "meaty" and I can feel thier brest bone. They have free access to feed, a mix of laying crumble and meat bird mix, corn and oats in the morning and what ever left overs I have. I am trying to give them high calories as we are having a COLD winter.
     
  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    If your chickens are teenagers they will feel skinny alongside the keel. If they are grown up, you should feel some meat there and your chickens should not feel lightweight.

    Skinny hens with diarrhea may mean worms. Mites/lice can also make them thin.

    You can also weigh them but I don't do that. I can tell by lifting the bird whether they have lost weight, as I pick my birds up.

    You will be able to feel the breastbone...that isn't important. What is important is that you feel meat beside the bone, along the sides toward the front.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2014
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,451
    3,565
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    To me the most important thing is how they act. If they're alert, active, glossy feathers, bright eyed, laying well if appropriate, healthy looking combs, no issues with disease or parasites, they're good. Some birds are a little lighter weight than others, but so are some humans! As long as they have feed available, and are healthy looking and acting, I don't worry about it.
     
  4. Heidi T

    Heidi T Out Of The Brooder

    29
    2
    26
    Dec 10, 2013
    Thank you for the advise. I won't worry (too much) but will worm and dust them.They are happy and active.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by