loosing feathers

hotrodchevelle

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 13, 2014
11
0
22
I have 8 hens, all of which have lost most feathers on their backs, showing bare chicken skin, I see them picking at each other from time to time but could it be some kind of mites, any help would be appreciated. thanks.
 

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
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10 Years
Aug 26, 2009
125,949
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Out to pasture
Do you have a rooster? They are very rough on a hen's back with their frequent breeding attempts.
There are people on this site that make "hen aprons," for just that purpose. It helps protect the back so new feathers can grow in.

How old are your hens? Have they been/started molting.? If they are pecking at each other, you should check thoroughly for mites. Any and all of these reasons can cause bald backs, and more.
 

hotrodchevelle

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 13, 2014
11
0
22
They are just over a year, had a rooster and he was very rough, removed him a few weeks ago. they have been like this for a couple months, started in the dead of winter and they have not grown back yet. I thought it was molting but people have told me that they do not loose to the point they are showing bare skin.
 

TwoCrows

A Native Raven
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9 Years
Mar 21, 2011
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New Mexico, USA
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Welcome to BYC!

Sounds like the rooster wore the feathers off and even though he is not with them now, the other hens are picking at the skin and new feathers. Feathers take weeks to grow back in. So you can do a few things...first I would spray all the bare skin with blu-kote to hide the bare skin and feathers. If they continue to pick each others feathers out, put pinless peepers on the offenders so they can't keep picking feathers. You can also try hen saddles. Sometimes these can get in the way of a lot of feathers growing, but if these areas are not that large, you might try them too.

http://www.hensaver.com

Good luck with your hens and if you have any other questions, that is what we are here for. Welcome to our flock!
 

BlessedFeathers

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 7, 2014
34
1
22
Dickson, TN
I had to send a rooster to the freezer because he was so rough with the hens. Their backs were a mess. It took a few months for their feathers to look good again.
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
Premium member
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
36,683
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Ohio
Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC! You've gotten some good advice above, good luck with your hens, hope they start growing feathers soon.
 

hotrodchevelle

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 13, 2014
11
0
22
Thank you for the words of advise. One of my hens will not eat or drink and appears to just want to sleep now, started yesterday, looking really drab. I think she is dying and I don't know what to do to help her.
 

TwoCrows

A Native Raven
Staff member
Premium member
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Mar 21, 2011
41,106
62,447
1,492
New Mexico, USA
My Coop
My Coop
Thank you for the words of advise. One of my hens will not eat or drink and appears to just want to sleep now, started yesterday, looking really drab. I think she is dying and I don't know what to do to help her.
Once they stop eating and drinking, they usually are dying. The best thing you can do right now is get her under heat. Sick and or dying birds are very cold. So at least she will be comfortable. Take her inside the house, put her in a basket and put a heat lamp on her. I am so sorry.
 

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