Barred Rock is picking feathers off her back

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ijoshuadavis, Aug 5, 2014.

  1. ijoshuadavis

    ijoshuadavis Hatching

    Aug 5, 2014
    I'm new here and wow. I'm a bit overwhelmed with all of the posts and information. Not sure how to search for an answer to my question. I never realized how many people had chickens. Crazy :)

    So here is our most favorite, pushy, and tough chicken, Marceline, seems to be picking at her back, removing feathers and has for weeks. No blood and it doesn't appear to be bullying.

    Any thoughts on what it might be? Lice? What should we do? It should be noted that all of the other chickens, 4 of them, have had no similar issues.


    edited by staff
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 6, 2014
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Welcome to BYC. Chickens normally groom themselves by reaching on their back to the oil gland and preening their feathers. Your chicken may have lice or mites, or she may be eating her feathers because she needs more protein in her diet. Check her skin all over, but especially in front of her vent for mite dirt or lice eggs. Chickens need a lot of room in the pen or to be let out to dust bathe regularly, or they can get bored or pick feathers. Make sure that your feed is a balanced poultry feed containing at least 16% protein. Here is some info with pictures of lice and mite eggs:

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