Is this molting?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by KatefromOz, Mar 14, 2018.

  1. KatefromOz

    KatefromOz Chirping

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    Hello! One of my chickens has started to lose heeeeaps of feathers (my backyard is covered in festhers). I'm in Australia so we have just come into Autumn so I know that's common molting time. I have attched a picture...does this look like a molt? I think this girl is only 10 months old. Another one of my girls had a few lice on her last week so we trrated all the chooks for lice. Any advice would be appreciated.
     

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  2. FeatherMtnFarms

    FeatherMtnFarms Songster

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    Looks like molting to me. Try not to touch her a lot since molting is painful and you don't want to break a feather shaft (blood vessels in them and if you break it it will bleed). I know you were just doing it for the picture though;)
     
  3. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Free Ranging

    Can you get a regular picture of the bird so we can see location and pattern?

    10 months old isn't a normal time to molt even in autumn. But some birds don't care what the books say. :p

    Sudden heaps of feathers would indicate a molt. As would a balding bird, assuming there were no signs of a struggle. It can be brought on by sudden lighting changes, dehydration, nutrient deficit, stress... any number of things, including that's just when it happened. Any recent changes?

    Mind if I ask some diagnostic questions? What do you feed including treats and supplements? How many birds, in how much space? Are they all the same age? What breeds? What did you treat those lice with?

    Molting is hard. High protein treats are a good choice during this time. Feathers are made of 90% protein and it's amino acids.

    Hope she recovers quickly. :fl

    I would be miffed if I had a 10 month old molt... She shouldn't be laying eggs if she is molting. That's another sign... the whole reason I add young layers is for winter eggs. :pop
     
  4. KatefromOz

    KatefromOz Chirping

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    Thank you for the advice...my husband sent me the photo. I told him how painful it can be for chickens with new feathers coming through...she is too quick for me to catch so I'm glad to see a close up! :)
     
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  5. FeatherMtnFarms

    FeatherMtnFarms Songster

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    No problem and yes it is good you got the photo! No problem with that but I agree with EggSighted4Life, a full body photo would help as well.
     
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  6. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

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    Yep, that's molting. A hard molt will scare you to death. It's like an explosion of feathers and the bird looks like a naked porcupine.
     
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  7. KatefromOz

    KatefromOz Chirping

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    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  8. KatefromOz

    KatefromOz Chirping

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    Actually there is more lol. I use pestene for lice treatment.
    Also I wanted to say...my isa brown has stopped laying eggs. My RIR lays every second day (im used to about 6 eggs per week)...she also recently lost a few festhers behind the neck but they have grown back. My isa brown was the chicken we found with a couple of lice. She hasn't lost any feathers.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  9. KatefromOz

    KatefromOz Chirping

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    Okay. Here are a couple of photos of the bird (Gina). And one of the other 2 girls. I don't know Gina's breed but i imagine she is a sex-link bird (i did a thread on here and no one could pin point her breed). She had been laying about 4-5 months which is how I came up her being around 10 months old. She has been broody 3 times already since laying. Back in feb she lost some feathers (not as many as this time) and brown feathers grew back (see photo) she is getting browner and browner. I have 3 chickens total. 1 RIR who is about 12 months old and an Isa brown who is about 6-7 months old.
    In terms of recent changes. We changed their feed recently from a mix to plain laying pellets (to try and reduce waste). We have just finished a pretty extreme heat wave and the past 2 weeks we've had lots of rain. So hardly any sunshine. The days are starting to get shorter but its still light from about 530am to 630pm.
    For treats they usual get left over salad ingredients such as lettuce, spinach, herbs, cucumber and bean sprouts. I have been giving them scrambled eggs and some plain tuna (rinsed to lower salt).
    They have a coop which is about 1.5 meters by 2.5meters. They free range in our backyard from 5.30am - 6.30pm daily which is about the space of 4 double beds and they have taken over our double garage which is where they hang out when its really hot.
    Hopefully that answers all your questions :)
     
  10. alexa009

    alexa009 Crossing the Road

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    Looks as if they are molting to me, I have had late molting chickens and early molting chickens. Chickens don't always have to molt a specific time of year. Especially depending on breed, I have seen my delaware for example molt in June and July.
     
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