Eating feathers?!

Saigey

Songster
Jun 16, 2019
185
483
111
Alabama, USA
I believe we've officially started our first "grownup" molt! 6 months old, and feathers are everywhere. This is a weird question, but occasionally my two try to eat their own little feather when they shed one. Is this as weird as I think it is?
 

Momplus1

Songster
Premium member
May 31, 2019
716
2,031
247
Moore County, NC
I agree with @MGG 100%

I had a Barred Rock Pullet that would eat feathers and it was soon after putting them on layer feed. I believe that feed was 16% protein. I decided to change their feed to a layer feed with higher protein and purina flock raiser with 20% protein and she stopped. I will occasionally see one eat a feather now and then but like their keeper, my girls can be wierd. It's usually because some mash was stuck on the feather or something like that. Definitely keep an eye on it and look at protein % in their feed if it seems like something other than being weirdos (I mean that in the most loving way, honestly)
 
Last edited:

Anabelle

In the Brooder
Nov 12, 2018
34
38
48
If it happens more often, give mealworms or hamburgers. My birds always eat feathers randomly, even the ducks. My hens some odd reason think they are bugs when in the air, and treats on the ground... It shouldn't be too big of an issue if feathers are being eaten unless all feathers are constantly being eaten and hens are eating them off other hens. That happened with me, my lowest pecking order hen was practically fatherless... She is at the bottom of the pecking order because one of her legs is slightly shorter than the other and she is a pretty small runt, not a bantam or mini, just a runt. She though, has been my best egg layer EVER at three years old she has given us over 1,000 eggs and even my 4-year-old RIR (we had two RIR hens but we lost one last summer :(), GLW girls, and BPR girls can not match up to it!
 

Saigey

Songster
Jun 16, 2019
185
483
111
Alabama, USA
They are on 22% non medicated starter feed that I've always mixed together with brewer's yeast for niacin and then ground organic oats to prevent too much protein as they start getting older. They get mealworms occasionally, even though it grosses me out lol. I'll cut back on the oats a bit. It's not out of control feather eating or even big feathers, just the random down one that floats by and looks interesting.
 

Saigey

Songster
Jun 16, 2019
185
483
111
Alabama, USA
I agree with @MGG 100%

I had a Barred Rock Pullet that would eat feathers and it was soon after putting them on layer feed. I believe that feed was 16% protein. I decided to change their feed to a layer feed with higher protein and purina flock raiser with 20% protein and she stopped. I will occasionally see one eat a feather now and then but like their keeper, they can be wierd. It's usually because some mash was stuck on the feather or something like that. Definitely keep an eye on it and look at protein % in their feed if it seems like something other than being weirdos (I mean that in the most loving way, honestly)
They are definitely little weirdos just like their keeper, and I love them anyway!
 
Top Bottom