Hen doesnt molt

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Hens rule, Feb 8, 2016.

  1. Hens rule

    Hens rule Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I got my hen Henny from a neihbor who moved. When i got henny and her sisters Henny was broody and had very ruff and torn feathers which i thought would go away when she and the others molted. Her and her sisters didnt molt unlike the rest of my flock. This year Henny didnt molt either and has very "oldish" feathers. (The top ones are missing many feather hair strand things and are thin. And her tail feathers seem warn) i dont really mind becuase my chickens are pets and not show birds but im just wondering. Thanks in advance! :)
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    It sounds like Henny has a nutritional deficiency. Or an illness. It takes a tremendous amount of nutritional reserves to molt. She also needs to be the right age. She might have beat up feathers but is just too young to molt.

    You could try giving her nutritional supplements, Poultry Nutri-drench, and animal protein like canned mackerel, or go catch her some fish if you're near a fishing source. Sometimes a sudden infusion of protein can jolt a chicken to complete molt.

    You can also try Feather fixer, but it's terribly pricey.
     
  3. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I would make sure your hens are getting enough protein in their ration, a 18-24% protein can help hens to recover and get through a molt. What are you feeding them? Are you adding any additional lights which can mess up a molt.
     
  4. Hens rule

    Hens rule Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I feed them treats everyday to everyother day. Could that be causing problems?
     
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Most hens will still molt even if they aren't getting enough protein, they will just take longer and some crave protein enough to start feather pulling or pecking.

    Some treats are fine, though that's why I like a higher protein feed, it offsets any extras I give while making sure they receive enough protein to stay healthy and strong.

    If she's an older hen it's possible there's a hormonal problem that's causing her not to molt. The best you can do if feed them well and hope things eventually straighten out under better care.
     
  6. Hens rule

    Hens rule Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks!
    I do give them the feather care food which is for hens who molt because it has extra protein around the time my hens molt. Henny is about 3 years old.
     
  7. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    What breed is she?
     
  8. Hens rule

    Hens rule Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Red sexlink or Red star
     
  9. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I suspected it, I've only had a couple of sex link hens, all have had some problems due to high egg production like feather and egg eating, as well as just stopping one day and never resuming. This is all my own opinion, but I think there's something in them laying so early in life, most four months, as well as the amount they lay that messes them up and completely drains them. I would suspect a hormonal problem or a deficiency.

    I have a dog that was on some steroids for an immune problem, during that time, my dog wouldn't shed her old coat, she kept it until the steroids were stopped, then she shed out normally. So this is why I would think something wrong with her hormones and the regulation of them.

    I would just keep feeding her correctly, a good non medicated grower is a good option, anything with at least 18-20% protein, maybe eventually she will molt.
     
  10. Hens rule

    Hens rule Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay. Thanks! I don't think any of the hens I got from my neighbor ever molted. I had a other sexlink like henny as well as a Sussex who seemed to never mold either. Henny does though grow new feathers when they fall out on occasion.

    One more question, is it normal for chickens to grow "mini" feathers on their ear lopes around the age of 2-3?
     

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