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Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by wbruder17, Jun 29, 2011.
Just wondering how many times a year a chicken will molt on average.
I want to know too! Good question! I hope someone answers soon
still a newegg but as far as i know from what ive read usualy once a year first as pullets then again at about a year old....so would that be 2 time the first year?
Once a year in the fall. So save up your eggs, because they don't lay when they molt. Usually around 12-18 months is when it starts, but I've had a few molt as early as 9 months.
How long do they molt? And I've noticed mine molting at all times during the year, but I live in a very warm climate. I wonder if that makes a difference?
I have 2 Delaware hens that molted at 9 and 10 months and an australorp and GLW that are molting now at 15 months. The rest haven't molted yet. Every chicken is different. Also you can throw them into a molt by not feeding them enough. I've never done this but I've heard about it.
An individual goes through 3 sets of feathers during first year of life. First is chick feathering and replacement of it starts as chick fuzz on head an neck replaced by contour / body feathers. Second is juvenile and replacement of it occurs as sexual maturity reached. Third set is usually complete by time frame / bones to near full size. In my games the third (first adult) feather set complete by age of 7 to 8 months after hatching. Thereafter a complete change over occurs annually in fall so as stated in previous posts, one molt per year.
Quote:Some breeds differ and stress can effect pattern / frequency of feather loss and replacement. My California greys seem to have single major annual molt as indicated above but also seem to have a more or less continous turnover of flight feathers. I do not think that is normal. Birds stressed by heavy laying, high temperatures, parasites or predator yanking feathers out can replace some feathers some of time.