chicken pecking off other chickens' feathers

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sleddog123, Dec 14, 2014.

  1. sleddog123

    sleddog123 New Egg

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    Sep 7, 2014
    I've noticed that two of my chickens have bald spots where the end of their wings meet their tail feathers. I didn't know what was happening until I witnessed my third chicken (with no bald spot) pulling out the others' feathers in that area. Does anyone know how to stop the pecking and how to heal the bald patches?
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    Last edited: Dec 14, 2014
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

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    That behavior is almost always either low protein diet or boredom/close confinement.

    What makes up their total feed intake?
     
  3. sleddog123

    sleddog123 New Egg

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    Sep 7, 2014
    they always have access to their food and have a coop and run built for 12 chickens (we only have 3)
     
  4. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

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    So that leads me back to protein. "their food" doesn't tell me what the protein percentage is nor what additional things the get like scratch or scraps.

    Poultry feed comes in anywhere from 15% to 27%. If they're feather picking, I'd make sure they're getting 18%+ temporarily and if they get anything else but feed, that will impact overall crude protein.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2014
  5. sleddog123

    sleddog123 New Egg

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    The brand of food crumbs we use is "Southern States All Grain For Layers and Breeders." The first thing on the ingredients list is "Crude Protein"- 16%

    we occasionally give them table scraps of fruit/vegetables but nothing that would contain protein
     
  6. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

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    If I had a feather pecker and bare spots, I'd probably switch to a grower feed for a while. 18-20%.
    16% is ok for making eggs and maintaining the body but apparently there's a greater need.
     

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