"loose" feathers, or what?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by patandchickens, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I am feeling very stupid and hope that someone can straighten me out. (Edited to add: I am not expecting you to cure my overall general stupidity of course, just this specific part of it <g>)

    The nine 11-wk-old speckled sussexes keep losing feathers. Wing feathers mainly, but now it is also smaller ones. My first thought was obviously that they're picking at each other, but if so then it's happening when I'm not there 'cuz I genuinely don't see it, not even if I sit out there and watch for the better part of an hour.

    When they flap, or go somewhere suddenly, or if I pick one up, it seems like some of the feathers just fall right off. The grown hens and the 11-wk-old chanteclers (living separately) aren't like that.

    So, is it picking that I'm not seeing that's loosening the feathers to where they come out on little provocation, or is this normal, or what is going on? I am really starting to worry about the large number of feathers that are lying all over the pen [​IMG] Not only do I want to find the cause, but having to regrow all them feathers can't be easy on a bird's body.

    Thanks,

    Pat
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2008
  2. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2007
    Maine
    They will lose and grow new feathers as they grow up. Getting adult feathers. Can you imagine if they had those tiny 4 week old feathers when they were full grown. They would look hilarious!! Feather loss is normal.

    If they start going really bald, though, look for bugs.
     
  3. hot wing stables

    hot wing stables Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2008
    id say they are molting, we are having the same problem with our show birds, they've lost their tal feathers, their wing feathers, and now they are losing their breast feathers.
     
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Oh! (smacks self upside head). Well that sorta makes sense doesn't it. Toldja I was stupid [​IMG] Yeah, they do not have any bald spots, the feathers are just here and there.

    Then perhaps the question is, why am I *not* finding feathers all around in the chantecler pen? They're just about as big. Are they eating them all?

    Thanks very much,


    Pat, feeling similar to when was a teenager and pointed out a very small wartlike growth on a male cat's belly to its owner, not that I really thought it was a tumor but it seemed like something to be aware of and keep an eye on, only to learn that male cats actually do have nipples LOL
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2008

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