Early Molting

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by petrel, Aug 28, 2014.

  1. petrel

    petrel Chats with Chickens

    My flock was one year old yesterday. They came into lay around February. One of my Barred Rock hens has been shedding feathers like crazy for nearly two weeks. Based on what I've read here, it is an atypical molt. She started molting around her vent and up her keel and from her wings. She hasn't lost any feathers on her head or back that I can see. She appears otherwise healthy with clear eyes, good appetite, and red comb. She is the only bird in molt. I've checked her for mites and lice.

    Should I be looking for a cause or is this just a molt?
  2. chickencreek

    chickencreek Chirping

    Aug 10, 2014
    SW Washington
    Same exact thing with my SLW she has no tail feathers (it makes her look funny)
  3. petrel

    petrel Chats with Chickens

    Thanks for the response. My preliminary research led me to believe that my hen's molting pattern might be an indication of some other problem.

    I guess if I had read further I would have gotten a few pages into the following thread:

    Molting seems to be covered pretty comprehensively there. I should have done my research before starting a new thread.
  4. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    I don't believe that this is an early molt. She's a year old and has been laying for several months. My first chickens molted for their first time when they were around 10 months old (though I've had some wait until 1 1/2 years).

    Her order of molting is a little unusual, though. Most birds begin at the head or at the tail. But, it does vary from bird to bird- I've had some start with the wings before.
  5. petrel

    petrel Chats with Chickens

    Ok, I appreciate that. I was worried that it was early and therefore a symptom of something else. It is still unsettling to watch her casually pluck out her own primary flight feathers and cast them aside!

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