Balding on front of neck under chin

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by superchemicalgirl, Apr 11, 2011.

  1. superchemicalgirl

    superchemicalgirl HEN PECKED

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    Jan 10, 2010
    Vacationland, Maine
    Hi guys,
    I've got quite a few chickens that are almost exactly a year old (51 weeks, exactly). In the past 4 weeks I've noticed some really rough looking chickens. Some of them are completely bald under their chins. In fact, two of my easter eggers are completely missing their beards! To make matters worse I've got a rooster that has made some of the hens bald on TOP of their cute little heads, too. I've put saddles on some of the worse for wear girls because their backs are not looking good, either.

    However, I know the rooster is not doing the feather damage to the front of the neck (under the chin) area. I have seen no evidence of feather picking and the girls are eating a 20% protein diet, and have been since 8 weeks of age (prior to that they were on 22%). They also get BOSS twice daily.

    At first I thought it was a molt or mini-molt (as I had some unfortunate chickens molt on their head/necks in the middle of winter) but I was in the coop most of Saturday and noted that some of the bald hens were still laying eggs, which wouldn't be the case if this were a molt.

    Then I thought it might be lice or mites, even though I've seen no evidence of it (aside from the baldness). I've gone out to the coop at night and looked all along the roost and in between feathers. Just in case, I put permethrin and carbaryl (Sevin) along with some DE in their turtle sandbox that they dustbathe in. However, it continues and I've noted that a new chicken is now starting to lose her feathers under her chin and down the front of her neck (and she's laying)! What the heck?!

    However, it's not all my chickens, it's only limited to about 10 chickens in my flock (out of 44, er 3 more hatched today, so 47), the rest are pristine looking (except for the rooster wear and tear on the favorites). The feathers that all the chickens do have are nice and shiny. I have 2 chickens with some mild poopy butt. Everyone is acting fine.

    Any thoughts, tips, suggestions??

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  2. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Overrun With Chickens

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    I had one hen in a flcok of 40 have this happen to - and I still do not know why - I thought maybe it was stress related - I sold them to someone who said it was not any type of parasite, or molting. She couldn't even figure it out but wasn't too concerned since she bought the bird like that. It was about a year old, also. CUrious to see what everyone has to say, also. Where did your birds come from? This particular bird came from Ideal. Weird, isn't it? Like ringworm almost.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  3. superchemicalgirl

    superchemicalgirl HEN PECKED

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    The ones in question are hatchery, McMurray. The skin under where they've lost the feathers looks fine, nice and white/pink and chicken-skin looking. Not red/inflamed.

    The two girls who are (ahem) unable to say no to the rooster and completely bald on top do have red skin up on the top of the head. I assume that's from the rooster.

    I also have to admit I just went out and did ivermectin pour on.

    I've had mites before, but they were confined to the chickens brooding in the house (bad batch of Purina FlockRaiser) and were cheese/grain mites, not blood sucking horrible nasty things.
     
  4. Luvamigo

    Luvamigo New Egg

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    We have a chicken who has lost almost all of the feathers from the top of her neck down all the way past the breastbone. What we have seen is she is pulling her own feathers out and lining one of the nest boxes with her feathers. Then, the other chickens come and eat the pulled feathers in the boxes. Don't know if this is what yours might be doing but it explains our "baldee."
     
  5. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Overrun With Chickens

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    Hmm, I would think that she is pulling them out, but it
    s right under her chin - she couldn't reach if she tried
     
  6. Larkin

    Larkin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have one hen out of my flock of 9 that sounds just like yours. Our rooster has picked out "Oreo" as his favorite and I have seen his rough lovemaking techniques where he'll grab onto her head and neck as he gains his balance. Some of the other favorites of his are looking a little sparse around the head and neck as well. Oreo is the only one who is getting bald in the front of her neck and almost completely on her back. Rough rooster is my guess for you too.
    Do you have a picture of her for us to see?
     
  7. Lunachick

    Lunachick Chicken Slave

    Mar 19, 2007
    Brick, NJ
    I'm having the same issues.......I was gonna post about it. Out of seven hens (no roo) I have one cochin with a bare neck in front. I see the small feathers in the nestbox area. I don't think she can pull them out?? I'll work on getting a pic later this afternoon. Curious about this, she seems fine and the skin looks good - just naked. What's going on?
     
  8. Frannabelle

    Frannabelle Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a black bantam cochin hen with a bare neck too and couldn't figure out what was going on. I could see feather pins trying to grow in but was clueless on why they weren't growing. 2 weeks ago on a nice (finally!) day here in SE Michigan, I observed several of her flock mates pulling her neck feathers out. I think one of them made a bare spot and on the black hen the white skin was just a magnet for them. I picked her up right away, sprayed some blue kote on the white skin, the purple color blended right in with the black feathers , and 2 weeks later, voila! She has neck feathers again
     
  9. smarsh

    smarsh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    it is flock members doing this, i am not sure why, but it is a subordinate within the flock that it happens to.
     
  10. Celtic Chick

    Celtic Chick Overrun With Chickens

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    I have the same thing with one of my girls also, but it is the bully of the crowd who has the naked neck. [​IMG] Her neck has been bare since late last summer. Some days the skin looked pink, other days, it was red. I was just out there over this past weekend and it finally looks like the feathers are starting to fill back in. Hope it stays that way. [​IMG]
     

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