1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Dry, Brittle and Broken Lookin Feathers on my Silkie

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ChickenLover741, Sep 6, 2015.

  1. ChickenLover741

    ChickenLover741 Out Of The Brooder

    16
    0
    22
    Jul 19, 2015
    I was showing my rooster at a fair yesterday, and a small boy asked if I wanted to buy one of his silkies. My flock had been reduced to five, thanks to a dog, so I said yes. I bought a six month old silkie rooster, and discovered that his "flight feathers" (Yes, I know chickens really can't fly) were dry, brittle, and all twisted and broken. It looks kind of like split ends in hair. Is there anything wrong with him? Or rather, any way to fix it?
     
  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Overrun With Chickens

    20,544
    1,135
    381
    Jul 24, 2013
    Could you post a photo? The broken feathers could be caused by other chickens pecking him, or he may be due for a molt. The feed that you give them has some effect on the brittlenss of feathers too. More protein might help. Twisted feathers do occur on birds (sometimes a genetic defect), but they might also be twisted from other factors. I know that some of my roosters get ragged tips to their wing feathers and bent feathers on their wings because they drag their wings on the ground courting hens, and the feathers quickly become chafed. This could be the case with the rooster.

    With that said, I'd really like to see a photo. One of my Wyandotte hens has had rather extreme feather problems since spring time that could be similar to your rooster. She had her tail feathers pecked by other younger birds will roosting, making them become ragged. She also had some of her wing feathers pecked, in some cases resulting in the feathers being only shafts. Yet, even when I solved roosting problems and stopped other birds from picking at her, the feather problems continued. She doesn't have any mites or lice and yet, her wing feathers still aren't in good condition. They are brittle, frayed at the ends, and still mostly shafts. She also hasn't molted completely, which is surprising since most of my other birds have. I'd be interested to see whether your Silkie's feathers are similar to my Wyandotte's
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. ChickenLover741

    ChickenLover741 Out Of The Brooder

    16
    0
    22
    Jul 19, 2015
    Thank you for answering my post, but I am now unable to answer your request for a picture, as my silkie (Angelo) has been killed by a fox. Thank you for trying to help.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2015
  4. kmama61

    kmama61 New Egg

    2
    0
    8
    Oct 10, 2015
    Troy Al
    Wyandottes7 just curious if you ever resolved the dry feather issue, and what caused it. My Wyandotte hen looks sort of like she's been electrocuted! She has always been such a beauty, but then back during the summer I noticed her feathers looking rough. Thought maybe she was just going into an early molt, but now she still looks the same. She is going on two years, and has also stopped laying about the same time the feather issue started. Any ideas? Thanks
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by