How often do they molt?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by wbruder17, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. wbruder17

    wbruder17 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2010
    Portland, OR
    Just wondering how many times a year a chicken will molt on average.
  2. halecards

    halecards Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 17, 2011
    I want to know too! Good question! I hope someone answers soon [​IMG]
  3. johnnyg07

    johnnyg07 Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 3, 2011
    north haven ct
    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 would that be 2 time the first year?
  4. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    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.
  5. poseygrace

    poseygrace Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 29, 2011
    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?
  6. Duramaxgirl

    Duramaxgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 12, 2010
    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.
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    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.

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