Itchy chickens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by mgainey, Sep 25, 2011.

  1. mgainey

    mgainey New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Sep 25, 2011
    I am new this this forum. I am trying to post a question about some of my chickens that appear to be itchy. Several of my chickens have bare patches on their "lower backs" in front of the upper tail feathers. Could this be mites or something else? If so, what do I do about it? They can't be comfortable! They are still laying and active. Please help!
     
  2. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,831
    108
    221
    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    It could be mites and I would spray for them; though they are not typically a problem this time of year.

    It sounds more like the birds are getting ready to moult. If so, then they will shed all their feathers; some here and there, some nearly all at once.
     
  3. shober

    shober Chillin' With My Peeps

    239
    7
    96
    Aug 8, 2011
    Do you see any little bugs on them? I would check and if you do it could be lice. Get some sevin dust and sprinkle it all over the birds. You can get it at any Home Improvement Store or Garden Center.[​IMG]
     
  4. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,831
    108
    221
    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    Or, if you have a cock bird; then it's just that he is treading them.
     
  5. mgainey

    mgainey New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Sep 25, 2011
    I am pretty sure it is not from moulting. I origianlly thought it started because of a young rooster who was very rough and awkward with the hens. We got rid of him. But the hens remain bare backed. Some even have places on their necks, which is why I thought it was the rooster. It hasn't happened to my bantams who are separate from the other chickens or the hens that are with my big rooster. We didn't mean to have the second rooster. He was purchased as a poulet... I saw an ad for Hen Savers. But, really? Really? My husband would have a fit!

    You mentioned spraying them, maybe as a precaution? With what? I want to make sure I get the right thing.
     
  6. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,831
    108
    221
    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    Again:

    It is most likely the moult.

    How old are they? 1 year or more? Have they moulted yet this year? if not: it is the moult.
     
  7. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    5,719
    42
    283
    May 8, 2007
    Wisconsin
    Also, if the feathers are broken off by the rooster instead of being pulled completely out, they don't grow back until the next molt. Sometimes that takes awhile.
     
  8. Tash189

    Tash189 New Egg

    4
    0
    8
    Dec 18, 2015
    Hi All
    I am new to this forum and would love to know how much itching and scratching is normal. I have two chickens. One I have had for a while and the other is new. I'm in Australia so it's summer here now.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2015
  9. Brookliner

    Brookliner Chillin' With My Peeps

    520
    46
    141
    Mar 18, 2012
    Southern New Hampshire
    Could you post a picture of the hen with bare patches?
     
  10. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

    15,934
    3,536
    436
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    Chickens do spend time everyday preening and scratching and tending to their feathers so some itching is normal. If you are concerned about parasites you should pick them up and check them for mites and lice, a few can be normal, look under the tail, under the wings down to the skin, look for white clumps at the base of the feathers and tiny black dot that move.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by