Leg Scales - do they 'molt' or 'shed'...do they get 'replaced' annually or periodically like feathe


Chicken Juggler!
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11 Years
Nov 27, 2012
SW Michigan
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Figured this was the best forum to post this in.

Not talking about scaly leg mites here, but healthy 'normal' leg scales.....
.....wonders do they 'molt' or 'shed'...do they get 'replaced' annually, or periodically, like feathers do?

I've searched for this and not found an answer and in all my copious reading have not seen anything about it...
.....so thought I'd start a thread to see what it gleans.
Thanks to sunflour, quoted from another thread:

It's hard to find references, but here's one with the following comment: http://www.ruleworks.co.uk/poultry/poultry-age.asp

"Also, the scales on older birds will tend to look rougher, particulary at the joints between the toes and the foot.
A new set of scales grows every year and, if the previous set is not completely shed, the build-up leads to roughness."

Others references I have found have too many "cookies" on site to drop on you.

But it makes sense that one set could not last a chicken or other bird their whole life.

Reptiles scale shedding is easy to research and find.

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