Bloody pin feathers

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sassfras, Oct 22, 2018.

  1. sassfras

    sassfras Chirping

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    One of my Girls (an easter egger) is having a horrible time with her pin feathers. Every day I seem to see fresh blood coming from a new one, I don’t see any of the other girls picking on her any extra, so I’m concerned that she has poor quality feathers, or that she’s picking herself. I know that chickens are tender during a molt, so I hate to trap and treat her, but I feel leaving this issue alone isn’t good either. None of the others girls molting are having this issue. It also seems the sheaths are slow to come off? Anyone else deal with this or heard of this?
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender

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    What are you feeding? They need a higher protein ration to molt efficiently. I personally haven't seen any bloody pin feathers ever, so I might think someone is picking at her. The sheath needs to be preened off by the bird after the feathers are done growing. I do on occasion help my polish and their crests but that's because they can't reach them. A normal chicken shouldn't need help.

    If it continues you may have to try a separation by a fence to see if it is from others.
     
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  3. OliveGrace

    OliveGrace Chirping

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    I found my EE who is molting at only 8 months with bloody tail pin feathers this morning. She is like 2nd in the pecking order so is not usually picked on. I watched from afar and saw that even the chicken on the bottom of the pecking order was pecking at her tail feathers. I am new to this so I, of course, was horrified. I put her in a warm Epsom salt bath and pulled the broken bleeding feathers and then sprayed her with Vetricyn and used a septic powder to stop any bleeding. She is in a crate in my laundry room right now. She seems better but I know she is wondering why she is not with the other girls. I have ordered a saddle and pinless peepers which I have never heard of until today. Since It could take weeks for the feathers to come in, I have to do something to protect her. I hope I am doing the right things. If you have any anyone has any other suggestions I would appreciate any help.
     
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Crossing the Road

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    For both @sassfras and @OliveGrace
    How much space do you have?

    A molting hen is vunerable not matter her status in the pecking order so it's not uncommon for a lower girl to take advantage.

    Having enough space and few places that hens can go to get out of the way of the flock can help during molting.

    As for separation...if that has to be done, do it within the coop/run, don't pull a bird completely out of sight of the flock, this will make integration harder when they are fully feathered. Also if kept inside, then you may also have a problem with re-acclimating them to winter temperatures as well.

    I occasionally separate out a bird that is having a bit of trouble, but usually only for a few hours so she can rest and eat/drink. I don't remove her, if my grow out area is full, then I cage within the run. All birds stay within sight of one another.

    I would up the protein either by offering a commercial feed that is 18-20% like chick starter or flock raiser or give treats like egg or meat.

    Hope it all works out for you both.

    Just my 2¢
     
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Chicken tender

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    t pecking is from crowding and boredom. How big is your coop and run and how many birds? The other reason is a lack of protein, so what are you feeding? Ration protein content? I recommend keeping younger birds on a 18% protein grower with a separate bowl of oyster shells for the calcium needs.
     
  6. sassfras

    sassfras Chirping

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    I hope this reply reaches all of you, I have an 8x10 coop for 18 girls and more than five times that outside, so I feel she has ample space (and they have lots of distractions and places to go), I think since she’s a shy girl she wasn’t getting her fill of food and her new feathers were of poor quality, I spoke with a vet that recommended pulling the damaged pin feathers out entirely (THAT was unpleasant!) and after that I made sure to supplement her specifically with iron, extra protein and some colloidal silver (I didn’t separate her, I’m just a nut and I made special treats I only shared with her while giving the other girls meal worms). Now she’s all fully feathered again, and instead I’m battling my first frost bite issues in three years with my newest ladies. It’s always something
     
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  7. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Crossing the Road

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    Glad to hear she is feathered out and doing better!
    Frostbite issues - are they on the combs/wattles or feet?

    Sounds like you have a fairly large coop, but how much ventilation do you have? It does need air flow while protecting the chickens from direct drafts. Chicken breath is moist and along with droppings that can create moisture in the coop - if there is not enough ventilation where all that moisture can be pulled up and out, then the chickens can get frostbite.
    With birds that have long wattles, sometimes when they drink, the water freezes on those and then they get frostbitten that way too.
     
  8. sassfras

    sassfras Chirping

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    Just on the combs, and while there is ventilation I will admit to a having an issue of moisture. This season was unseasonably rainy, and the newly constructed coop leaked but never had a chance to dry before the cold came in. So I have been trying to religiously clean their droppings, use a blow dryer on the wood (which in the cold weather has been pointless but I still try), and apply bag balm on a semi regular basis. I thought my beautiful new coop was going to solve all my problems, but as with any new construction, it has kinks to be worked out.
     
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  9. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Crossing the Road

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    I'm sorry to hear that your coop was leaking and made a mess!
    Have you been able to fix the leak?
    What about setting up a fan during the day to help dry it out. I know with cold weather it can be a challenge, but air circulation may help with that.
     

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