Lispy's missing feathers

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by xmylove83x, May 4, 2016.

  1. xmylove83x

    xmylove83x New Egg

    3
    0
    9
    May 4, 2016
    This is Lispy, She is our lovely cross-beaked araucana whos 1 year old this month. She has recently lost some feathers on the bottom of her belly. We have 5 other hens and a rooster. None of the other hens are missing any feathers. We are very worried and stressed about her and I have not been able to find any answers through google. Any advice you have we would be forever grateful.
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

    31,936
    4,449
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Hello and welcome to BYC!

    Many hens pluck a feather here and a feather there as they go into lay their eggs. Over time the chest or between the legs can become completely bald. Broodies will do this as well. Very common to pluck feathers from these areas. As long as she is acting completely normal, there isn't much to be concerned about. All my hens have bald spots down there. LOL

    Take a good look at her after she molts in the fall. She should fill in again, only to pull them back out.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    63,303
    7,813
    726
    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] Is there any possibility that one or more of the others are feather plucking her?
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. xmylove83x

    xmylove83x New Egg

    3
    0
    9
    May 4, 2016
    Ooo reply' should here. Lol. It is not likely she is getting picked on. We have never witnessed her being targeted.

    Can hens lose their feathers down there without plucking? Because of her cross beak I am not sure if she can pluck them out.
     
  5. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

    31,936
    4,449
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Feathers generally don't fall out by themselves unless they are molting them out. And they don't start molting on the belly first. LOL So either she is chewing them off or plucking them out. Maybe she never had any there to begin with? Cross beaks have underlying internal issues that usually you are not aware of. The cross beak is only a symptom of these issues. I would imagine the skin is red? Usually unfeathered areas of skin are red, if they are like that for long periods of time. I would still have to say she is either plucking them out herself, chewing them off or somebody else is plucking them. Does she lay down on a rough surface all night long? I suppose if she were laying on sand all day or all night long, this might cause feather loss. Or any surface that might be breaking the feathers off?? Even a hard roost bar can break off feathers.
     
  6. xmylove83x

    xmylove83x New Egg

    3
    0
    9
    May 4, 2016
    Thank you, it is not likely she has always been missing them, she's friendly and gets handled often. There is no redness which is why I did not assume it was trauma related. It's just pale and a little flakey. The birds have been actively dust bathing lately, and she usually gets into it more than others.

    I was unfamiliar with the fact that cross beaked birds had underlying issues. Is there anything that needs to be done to care for them?

    Thank you for your responses
     
  7. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

    31,936
    4,449
    581
    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    From what I understand, vitamin deficiencies are the biggest culprit in causing health issues in cross beaks. Not only did the parent bird or birds have deficiencies, but cross beaks themselves don't get enough to eat to get all they need. These deficiencies cause all kinds of genetic issues with organs, hearts, circulation, all of it. They can't preen properly, (preen gland oil is very important for beaks, scales and feather health). So unfortunately, they can hatch with all kinds of health issues from the start.

    Here is a nice article on cross beaks and caring for them that might help you care for her better.... https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/...ds-chickens-including-tube-feeding-techniques

    And here is a great thread you can join in on for support, answers to questions or just companionship from others than keep cross beaks... https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...-for-special-needs-chickens-and-their-keepers

    Good luck with your baby! I would ask this same question in that last link I left you to the support thread on cross beaks. Maybe others are having this issue too. :)
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2016

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by