Help!! Hens loosing feathers at neck

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by willow31way, Jan 10, 2013.

  1. willow31way

    willow31way New Egg

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    Apr 24, 2012
    Manasquan New Jersey
    Both of my New Hampshire Red hens are loosing feathers around their necks and rapidly. I havent been able to pin point if the other hens are pecking them or they are falling out on their own. There are long white stem like pieces that look like they were the root of the feathers that are no longer there. I don't know what to do about this!

    From the little information I quickly found on my lunch break it looks like they are molting. Is this possible? I thought they only molted in the fall?

    Please help! EKK

    pictures to follow
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2013
  2. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    No need to worry. Molting this time of year is perfectly normal.
     
  3. willow31way

    willow31way New Egg

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    Apr 24, 2012
    Manasquan New Jersey
    [​IMG]

    They both look something like this. I know it's silly but I'm worried they're freezing. My four other sex links are fat and feathery and these two ladies look a bit sad
     
  4. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    No they are not freezing.


    [​IMG]
    Your hen has nothing on my girl Spock ;)

    She's naked all under her belly as well. It's a breed of chicken. If they can weather the cold, your molting hens can as well.
     
  5. willow31way

    willow31way New Egg

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    Apr 24, 2012
    Manasquan New Jersey
    Fewww! This is our first flock so were still trying to figure it all out. Thanks so much for the help!
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Yep! That's molting. Those are pin feathers coming in. I have one hen who is just now going through molt after the other fourteen chickens have mostly finished. Bad timing. But she doesn't appear to be freezing.

    Watch those bare areas on their necks. If the pin feathers start to disappear, resulting in bare naked skin, then you have a real problem. The pin feathers are rich in blood supply, and very tasty morsels. If they discover these little "treats", they can get addicted to them, thus becoming feather-pickers.

    Also, chickens that are molting normally don't wish to be handled because those pin feathers are very sensitive and prickly. Be careful if you have to handle a molting chicken because if a pin feather breaks, the bleeding is hard to stop.
     
  7. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    Feather picking shouldn't be an issue if there is ample space.

    But I agree, they are very attracted to blood and it's very tasty to them.
     
  8. chickenlily13

    chickenlily13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2013
    Vermont
    I have a new Hampshire red and has just started loosing her neck feathers , she is only 8 months old. I thought they molted when they were a little older , her 3 sisters haven't started yet. Her comb has also changed color - purple ish . The cold weather hopefully won't bother this as we are headed that way here in Vt.
     
  9. cockfighter

    cockfighter Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 23, 2013
    san antone texas
    Willow31way. Don't worry them hens are a molting. If they look a little sad its the molt. Your chickens are going to require more attenention because of the winter and molt
     

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