Bare Butts

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by bobbilyn2000, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. bobbilyn2000

    bobbilyn2000 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 16, 2014
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    Help!

    I have 2 coops of chickens. In 1 coop I have 23 hens and a Rooster. Many of the hens have their entire butt showing with no feathers. Now a couple of them are also missing neck feathers. My welsummer looks like she might be losing them on her chest as well. Other than that they seem perfectly normal. They are laying eggs like crazy and are all active and healthy. I put vinegar and garlic in their water. DE in the next boxes. I have sprayed them all with poultry protector a couple of times. Deep cleaned the coop and sprinkled DE and sprayed Poultry Protector all over. They just seem to lose more feathers and look awful. Is this much feather loss a sign of overcrowding or is there something else I am missing? In my other coop the girls are all healthy.

    I welcome all suggestions!!

    thanks!
     
  2. SunkenRoadFarms

    SunkenRoadFarms Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What are the coop sizes? Can you see mites or lice?
     
  3. bobbilyn2000

    bobbilyn2000 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 16, 2014
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    My Coop is a 12 X 12 and the run has 10 sq ft per chicken. I've looked for mites and lice and haven't seen anything. Maybe I don't know what I'm looking for?
     
  4. SunkenRoadFarms

    SunkenRoadFarms Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Where are you located and what are the ages of the birds? I'd be inclined to say it might be a boredom issue.
     
  5. justplainbatty

    justplainbatty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 30, 2007
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    It sounds like evening feather picking on the roost. I have a large coop,high protein feed and things for my chickens to do. They have access to a shoveled run and quarter acre free range cleared by tractor. They get some kind of treat every day to look for in the coop and out on the snow. They also have a flock block. It has been super cold this winter so when they're out during the day there are minimal squabbles but when they go to roost, they are all cramming together to stay warm despite having more than 30 feet of roost space by way of ladders and branches. There is even 12 feet of perch available on the front of the nest box rows. (I have 16 standards and one bantam(who has her own 2 foot roost)). It's just at dusk when they are fighting over who gets to be where, that I see them pecking each others' butts. So I have about 5 hens with naked butts. I've always had between 15 and 25 chickens in this coop over the years. Right now I have 17 and it's just this particular flock that does this. It's mostly RIR's vs. EEs and BOs. Hopefully when it gets warm, they'll spread out and leave each other alone! Meanwhile it's no pick lotion and blu kote butts. [​IMG]
     
  6. bobbilyn2000

    bobbilyn2000 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 16, 2014
    Nebraska
    @SunkenRoadFarms We are in Nebraska. The birds are all about 10 months old and I have a variety of Breeds. Interestingly enough none of the Easter Eggers or the Rhode Island Reds have bare butts. My Brahma and Welsummer are the worst. My Australorp and Sex Link have some issues. Its varied but it definitely tends to be worse with some of the breeds than others. @justplainbatty I have not used No pick lotion or Blue Kote. Can you educate me?
     
  7. justplainbatty

    justplainbatty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sure! blu kote covers red skin (which invites more picking) by turning it blue/purple. They have trouble seeing blood feathers that are covered with it. It also has some antiseptic properties. Drawback is, it stains everything! It takes a long time to go away, try to spray really close and accurate or get the brush on kind bc it stains feathers. Rooster Booster No Pick Cover Up Lotion is purple, doesn't hide red skin as well as blu kote, stains less but, it tastes REALLY bad to chickens! The offending bird suddenly find out that the bird's butt tastes nasty! The look on one of my RIR's face and the ensuing beak snaping and wiping was pretty funny I must admit! It's really a pain to keep up on but if left unchecked, I have heard that sometimes an aggressive bird will actually break through and eat another bird's abdomen. I also try to be present at roost time to intervene and/or put aggressive birds back on the floor so that they have to start climbing the 6 foot tall ladders and upper roosting poles all over again. All the while, it is getting dark. Once it is dark they run out of time for accurate, focused pecking and settle down pretty quick!
     
  8. bobbilyn2000

    bobbilyn2000 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 16, 2014
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    Thank you! I will get one or both of those right away.
     
  9. justplainbatty

    justplainbatty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You are welcome, I'm happy to help! I should also add that removing an aggressive bird for a period of time to lower her rank may help and sometimes the bird just needs to leave. :( Your choice on how it leaves. I'm hoping with my 10 month old bunch who are all bonded as a flock, will work things out as they mature but I am aware that it may not go my way....[​IMG]
     
  10. bobbilyn2000

    bobbilyn2000 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 16, 2014
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    That's true. We've had to cull aggressive hens in the past. I just need to spend a bit more time observing to figure out who the problem lady is. I appreciate your help.
     

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