Are my hens just getting old?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Kelsey Cathy, Nov 21, 2011.

  1. Kelsey Cathy

    Kelsey Cathy Out Of The Brooder

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    May 23, 2009
    All of my 2 1/2 years old hens combs have become a very pale and pasty pink looking. They have also just flat stopped laying.....no slow down just stopped! The run also looks like there was a slaughter in there with all the feathers everywhere. They did their molt last winter and were nearly bald but this feather loss is different but plentiful. There has been no change to their diet or activity. They seem normal in every other way.
    I have some pics but don't know how to upload here. I did notice in the pics though the comb seems to have the a deeper color on the tips and a spot or two ????
    So I guess my question is: are these things related? Is this their entry into 'chicken menopause'
     
  2. ChicknThief

    ChicknThief Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 12, 2008
    Nor Cal
    No worries dear [​IMG] Your hens are just molting. During this time they will lose many feathers and will slow or stop egg production. The should come out of it in a couple weeks [​IMG]

    Your chickens are still considered young. I have known many a hen to live into her teens
     
  3. Kelsey Cathy

    Kelsey Cathy Out Of The Brooder

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    May 23, 2009
    Thanks that's reassuring but I thought they only molted once in a lifetime not yearly. Does the comb always change color with the molt?
     
  4. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    They molt every year. Where did you hear that it was once in a lifetime? A pullet goes through three molts in her first year alone [​IMG]
     
  5. 6chickens in St. Charles

    6chickens in St. Charles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 25, 2009
    St. Charles, IL
    Quote:This year my 3 year old hen turned yellow with her moult. I checked her poops for parasites, found none. But if they look pale, certainly check for mites and worms. Now is a good time for worming if there's worms, before the winter so they will have best nutrition through the winter.
     
  6. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Being molting and not laying eggs, it's a perfect time to worm and look for mites and lice, and powder.
     
  7. Kelsey Cathy

    Kelsey Cathy Out Of The Brooder

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    May 23, 2009
    Well it has been 3 months and I finally got an egg from my leghorn in Feb. Got one from my Wyndotte this week. Things are looking up [​IMG]. Thanks for all the great advise.
     
  8. terryg

    terryg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 5, 2007
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    Now that chicks are being sold year -round, and not just in the springtime, we're seeing the yearly molt at "off" times of the year. In the past, you got spring chicks and after the first year you knew which were your good layers because those were the ones that molted late in the fall. Poor layers molted at the end of summer. All chickens do their first, mature molt at about 15 months of age, and then yearly after that.

    Your hens are past their prime for laying (that's the first year) but will continue to lay well for another 2 years. However, they stop during the molt. If you want to see the difference between old and young hens, see my pics and blogpost here: http://www.hencam.com/henblog/2011/10/old-hen-young-hen/
     

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