Do Chickens Scratch With Their Beaks?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chicksgalore, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. chicksgalore

    chicksgalore Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 19, 2008
    I've noticed something with my girls lately. Sometimes after walking around and pecking at the wheat/corn I put out in the afternoon, they'll all go over and stand in this one part of their "yard" and just start digging in their feathers with their beaks very much like a dog does if it has fleas. After they do that for a little bit, then they go on about their business, walking around, scratching, sitting to rest, etc. I checked a few of them for lice/mites but I didn't see anything. Do they do this even if they don't have lice?
     
  2. pax12

    pax12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    mine do that to yours should be fine
     
  3. cyrixlord

    cyrixlord Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Id call that preening. My parrot does that too, especially when hes excited. as long as you dont see blood, or if it looks irritated where they're pecking, you will be fine. You will also see them do it when they molt, to prepare those itchy quills for being wonderful new feathers.
     
  4. chickenchickenbulkbulk

    chickenchickenbulkbulk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is normal behavior for chickens!! [​IMG]
     
  5. chicksgalore

    chicksgalore Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks. I'm not sure why I didn't notice it before--I guess I'm just extra-sensitive right now because they're not laying very well. Maybe it is just due to the light decrease.
     
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    They have an oil gland above the base of the tail -- look amongst the feathers there, in the lowermost part of their back just before the tail starts, and you will find it -- and they distribute the oil thru their feathers by preening with their beaks. It's ok [​IMG]

    Pat
     

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