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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by donjr, Apr 3, 2010.
The rooster is ruff! Feathers missing from hens back. They will grow back, right?
The feathers will grow back.
However, if you have any feather pickers, including the hen with the bare back, they will be attracted to the blood-rich pin feathers emerging. This can make it appear that the baldness is permanent.
It takes several weeks for the feathers to grow back, and meanwhile it would be helpful to put something on the bare spot to discourage picking, such as "Pick-no-more" or something similar such as pine tar.
I currently have a hen with a bare back. I made a "saddle" for her to wear that keeps the bare spot covered so she and her mates won't pick at the pin feathers. It also protects her bare back from getting sunburned, a problem she was having before I covered her up. You can get the pattern for the saddle by using the "search" on this site. You can also buy them on the internet.
On edit : I forgot to mention that saddles, or aprons, were originally designed expressly to protect a hen from a rough roo. When you first put one on a hen, she can react quite intensely, but after a few hours, they usually ignore it. It's basically a 5" x 8" piece of sturdy material with loops of elastic toward the top end that go around the wing pits.
They will grow back, but when a feather grows back depends on whether it was broken off or pulled out. A feather that is broken off somewhere along the shaft, or trimmed by a human, like flight feathers sometimes are, will grow back during the normal molt. Molts happen at particular times of the year. A feather that is pulled out completely, will grow back right away. People don't usually pull feathers, as it's painful for the bird, but there are rare occasions. So, when they grow back will just depend on if some of them were broken off by the roo or pulled out.
It can take some time for the feathers to grow back. Your girl might need an apron for a while. I got one from Hen Savers (a sponsor for the month) and it's been wonderful for the poor thing.
I have 9 hens and many of them were completely bald (3" -4" patches) from our 'loving' roo.. He is no longer here, it's been about a month and tiny tuffs of feathers are just starting to come back in on some of their heads.. I am thrilled to see it.. They look so much healthier and seem 10000X happier w/ out that mean ol' roo... Maybe in another month, I will not need to apply sunblock!!!! LOL
I have on smaller polish hen that has a large bald spot on her back. I'm debating on removing her from the rest and keeping her in a seperate cage (25"X38") for a couple weeks or covering her back in some way. Could I make an "apron"? Does anyone have simple plans or a template? I plan on keeping the rooster for the hens protection as they are out roaming a few hours a day and on weekends. None of the other 7 hens have any missing feathers that are noticable.
I also have a couple that are a little over a month old that I want to introduce into the flock. I may remove the rooster for a few days (same cage) when I do that.
I usually don't like it when people bump, but BUMP.
See woodlandwomans post above. In addition see my post in following thread as it addresses when those times are for adult birds.
If birds not yet full adult, then moult is already ongoing and replacement will be within 90 days.