Hard molt - funky feathers comming in

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by VT Chick-lit, Nov 10, 2008.

  1. VT Chick-lit

    VT Chick-lit In the Brooder

    My Roxy, a 2 year old Black Austrolorp is going through a hard molt right now. I got her this spring and have never seen a molt before. She is getting pretty bald and the "feathers" that are comming in are not fluffy but seem to be like gray pins. they are from 1-2 inches in length and odd looking. Is this ok or should these new "feathers" look like feathers as the come out? How long will this process take. she has been dropping her feathers at a quick rate for the past 2 weeks. For the first week it looked like a feather pillow exploded in the coop and run. She seems to have tapered off now. It is getting cold here now (30s at night and 40s during the day) and I wonder if she will get her feathers in time to keep her warm this winter. We can get snow at any time.

  2. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

    Jan 18, 2008
    Newman Lake, WA
    That is normal. Those are called "pin feathers".

    When the feathers come in they are encased in a cuticle and the cuticle wears off and the "regular" feather is inside.
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    What you are seeing are the pin feathers. They are "pins" and inside are the developing feathers. Don't break them and keep an eye out for broken ones caused otherwise, as if they bleed, it can start pecking problems. They will eventually open up when she preens. I'd give about a month for a good coat change. Extra protein from a "layer supplement" or meat scraps can help with feather growth.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by