Crewcut for the Houdan?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by 2DogsFarm, Dec 19, 2009.

  1. 2DogsFarm

    2DogsFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    My Houdan pullet gets her topknot in the waterbowl.
    Not a problem in warm weather, but in the cold temps we've had here it freezes!
    Poor thing has these icicle feathers on top her peahead [​IMG]

    Doesn't seem to bother her, but it looks uncomfortable to me.

    Should I cut them short to stop this?
     
  2. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    spring hill, florida
    She might need those feathers to keep her head warm. Did you think about using tape?
     
  3. 2DogsFarm

    2DogsFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    ??? do you mean tape the feathers together?

    I wouldn't cut them completely off - just shorten so they don't get "dipped"
    I've trimmed her before when they flopped over her eyes too much and she was running into things.

    I'd leave her a topknot, just not so long - I'm sure those frozen feathers aren't providing much warmth anyhow.
     
  4. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    sounds good. My faverolles get dirty beards!
     
  5. dappertophatter

    dappertophatter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you want to trim the ends, that's fine.
    Can you give them warm water in the morning in a regular waterer, then take it out at night so it dosen't freeze? This is what I do, and while it does take a bit of work, it's been working nicely for our small flock. Don't cut the feathers real short- just the most problematic feathers and just the tips so the other chickens can't see the yummy blood feathers coming in and start picking at her.

    OH- if they flop over her eyes again- just grab them near the base and yank them out (as long as they're not blood feathers). Keep yanking a few every day until when her eye is level with yours, you can see the entire eye. I do this CONSTANTLY with my show Polish, and they're outside galumping around in the snow as we speak- no more crashing into things! It seems that when you remove the entire feather, the others cover the spot, but when one clips them all halfway down, they sort of stay apart and let the other chooks pick at the tasty-looking pink head.
    Good luck with your girl!
     
  6. JakRat

    JakRat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Dover
    you could knit a little hat for her [​IMG]
     
  7. 2DogsFarm

    2DogsFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    [​IMG]

    That would work...if I could knit!

    Dappertophatter:
    thanks for the good advice
    I have a heated water bowl for them so no frozen water ever.
    It's just that her topknot dips into the water when she drinks, then the wet feathers freeze when she goes outside.

    OK: I'm a newbie - what is a blood feather & how do I recognize it?
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2009
  8. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    I have one of those plain galvanized chicken waterers, and when they drink, they can't get their head feathers wet. The area is too narrow. I have 6 Polish.
     
  9. dappertophatter

    dappertophatter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A blood feather is a new feather coming in- it has a sheath near the bottom and looks pinkinsh. Here, I'll see if I can find a pic...

    http://www.tailfeathersnetwork.com/birdinformation/bloodfeathers.php Here, everything you need to know!


    Have you got an open bowl, or a regular galvanized waterer? If her head feathers are dipping into the water when you have a regular waterer, it's definitely time to yank the most problematic feathers.
     
  10. 2DogsFarm

    2DogsFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    I have an open heated waterbowl, not a regular waterer.
    The other 4 don't have Her Foofiness' head feathering so it doesn't bother them.

    In Summer I use a regular poultry waterer and she doesn't get her topknot wet.

    dapper: thanks for the info on bloodfeasthers & the link, I may end up trimming just the part of her topknot that is getting dipped
     

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