Do dropped chicken feather decompose?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by The Kibble Goddess, Nov 3, 2010.

  1. The Kibble Goddess

    The Kibble Goddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 24, 2009
    Sylvania, Ga
    Last week Buddy the dog de-feathered Sister's tail. (Everyone's fine.) I was lazy and didn't pick the clump of feathers up out of the yard. Now they're all over the place, and while it doesn't bother me, Hubby would like the yard to look neat. Do chicken feathers decompose? How long does it take? Would mulching them with the leaves help?
  2. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    Yes, they do decompose but it takes time. Especially if it doesn't rain.

    I never gather up feathers when my birds molt because usually in a couple of weeks they are no longer noticeable. This year on the other hand we've been in a drought for the last couple of months so now I have feathers everywhere. We finally got a small amount of rain last night and hope for more these next couple of days so they should begin to disappear over the next couple of weeks.

    But if your hubby can't wait that long you'll want to rake them up to put into your compost pile.
  3. Smiles-N-Sunshine

    Smiles-N-Sunshine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 19, 2008
    Palominas, Arizona
    Me too. In my less-than-ideal composting experience, the feathers are always left over when the manure and pine shavings are done. Maybe just a shallow burial if that's an option?

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2010
  4. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I NEVER have to gather up feathers. The MICE steal them and take them away to build nests. I find them under tarps and in the logpiles.


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