Eating Feathers????

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by krazeepolack, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. krazeepolack

    krazeepolack Chillin' With My Peeps

    I sit in my cage w/my chicks almost everyday if I have time. One "red" seems to have adopted me already. She'll jump in my lap & sit for the longest time, getting rubbed & petted. Several others will sit for shorter times. What I have noticed recently, is all of a sudden, one hen or another will zoom down on a loose feather & scarf it as if they were starving. I have seen them eat a loose lying feather(s) amost 2" in length!!!! Is this a signal I don't understand?? Has anyone seen thier chickens doing this??
  2. Beckyinma

    Beckyinma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 1, 2010
    Quote:mine do it too. only the fluffy down ones though, not the big long pointy tip ones. I think they have a lot of protein in them.
  3. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    Eating feathers can be a sign that they need more protein. What are they getting to eat?
    It's usually not a problem unless they start plucking each other, but I don't think I'd like it. Maybe could cause a crop impaction????

    Last edited: Oct 20, 2010
  4. Kassaundra

    Kassaundra Sonic screwdrivers are cool!

    Sep 1, 2010
    I also read on this forum it could be from a lack of lysine in their diet. (as well as protien)
  5. OregonChickenGal

    OregonChickenGal Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2010
    Central Oregon
    Some of mine do it also. They get plenty of protein. It's normal, chickens like feathers (down).
  6. krazeepolack

    krazeepolack Chillin' With My Peeps

    They are only 9 weeks old, so I still have them on Pruina start & grow. They love the stuff.
  7. mskittydjs

    mskittydjs Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 19, 2010
    I have seen mine do it too. My girls are about 6 months old...2 BO and 3 BAs. I have 2 new RIRs girls (about 4-5 months old) and have noticed the others "picking" on them and pulling a feather or two out and occasionally eating it. My girls are on layer pellets. DH bought them instead of the crumbles and I don't think they eat the pellets as well.

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