Australorps loosing feathers

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by remist17, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. remist17

    remist17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 29, 2011
    Pennsylvania
    Hello all.
    I have two australorps that are 3 years old loosing feathers around their butt, vent and up around their tail feathers. Just on the back side nothing under the wings or middle to upper back. One has some feathers missing on her head about a pea or a little larger area. No other areas are loosing feathers, they seem to be eating. I picked up one to look for bugs and could not see any. I put some poultry dust on them on Sunday. I run no rooster. All other chickens seem to be ok. Are these going through a molt? Suggestions?
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    It sounds more like feather-picking, maybe because of the harsh winter weather, and being inside so much. Try some anti-pick lotions, giving some higher protein either by giving 20% or some dry cat food as scratch, make sure they are not over crowded, and put some things in the coop to climb on and explore. Molting usually takes place at 1 1/2 and 2 1/2 years, and tends to strat around the neck.
     
  3. remist17

    remist17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 29, 2011
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    Ok. I have 7 hens in a 6x8 coop with a 12x14 run. They have been in and out of the run when the snow melts, and I shovel at least a 5x5 area.

    I use Dumore layer from Tractor Supply I think its 16%. I will add some more cat food to the scratch. i am not familiar with anti pick lotions. What are they and location to secure them?
     
  4. remist17

    remist17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here are some photos of the two hens in question. Do I have a feather picker? These are the only two looking like this. You can see the Sussex is fine and the two delawers are also fine.
    I dusted them about 3 days ago with a poultry dust from TSC.

    [​IMG]

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    This is the one with feathers gone on the head. No growths or scabs.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2014
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I would suspect the sussex or delawares for being your picker. If they're molting, you should find feathers in your coop. Try using some BluKote on the bare spots--it stains but may work for you. Other things to try are Vicks Salve, Bag Balm, or Pine Tar (messy) which makes it taste bad to stop picking. Rooster Booster makes an anti-pick lotion for sale at farm stores. Hopefully soon when they are let out more, this will stop.
     
  6. remist17

    remist17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ill try and secure some save today. Do you think feed plays a part? I use dime feed from tractor supply. Im thinking to change to purena. Thoughts?
     
  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Purina makes the Dumor feed that TSC sells, but it is more powdery than Purina. I like Purina Flock Raiser 20%, or you could try a bag of Dumor Chick Starter for game birds 24% temporarily to supplement your regular feed, but I wouldn't keep them on it since 20% is as high as you should go. Extra calcium (oyster shell) should be provided on the side. The Bag Balm seems to be popular for picking.
     
  8. remist17

    remist17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok. Currently I use crumbles any issue changing to pellets? Everything I find is pellets with higherprotein
     
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I switched mine to pellets last year--just mix it in the feeder, or put out 2 feeders for a few days with both types to get them used to it.
     
  10. remist17

    remist17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 29, 2011
    Pennsylvania
    Thanks for the suggestions. I got the Purina layer, Sunflower seeds, 20% rabbit pellet and some anti peck purple goo. I put the goo on them last night. Made the hen house smell nice.

    Making plans this weekend to enlarge the run by 5ft x8ft.
     

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