losing feathers from her cushion

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by horsehauler, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. horsehauler

    horsehauler Hatching

    Nov 6, 2010
    One of my six 10 month old girls has lost a group of feathers from her Cushion in front of the tail feathers, she is pictured in my avatar tothe left and is one of two Brahma’s who live with two Rhoad Island Reds and two Barred Rocks. If "she" were a "he" it would be the saddle area of the back. It doesn't appear they are pulled out and I don’t see any of the birds fighting/pecking at each other. Her skin looks red and sore where the feathers came out.

    when going from the coop to the outside enclosed pen they all crouch down to go under a raised lexan panel that can be lowered closed in extremely cold weather or if I need to keep them in the coop. They do occasionally rub this area of their back going in and out but I have never seen them lose feathers or be bothered by rubbing along it.

    Can't see any infestations of bugs that may cause irritation, i.e. mites/ fleas that sort of thing . She is active, appears happy and is laying so I don't think it is a molt yet due to age and location of initial feather loss.

    I'll try to post a picture of the skin/sore on her back.

    Any ideas on what to look for or how to treat the sore looking skin?
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012

  2. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    Do you have any cock birds/cockerels? It sounds like it could be due to being bred.
  3. janinepeters

    janinepeters Songster

    Jun 9, 2009
    Yes, and if there is no male in the flock, then maybe one of the other females is "breeding" her. This is not uncommon in all female flocks, and since the dominant hen often does it quickly and quietly, without all the fanfare of crowing and dancing, the behavior can go unnoticed.
  4. horsehauler

    horsehauler Hatching

    Nov 6, 2010
    thanks for the replys, We have no roos / cock birds in the flock and they are fully enclosed so there are no predator opportunities which was my initial thought when I saw the spot, I figured maybe they were laying against the wire enclosure and had a predator try to grab them but only got the feathers. She also is not a dominant bird, the barred rocks and RIRs maintain that position. I also noticed the other Brahma with a similar bare spot on her back last evening when I was collecting eggs, she is more laid back than the other so it appears they both have this problem.

    all the girls love to come over and say hello when we go in to the coop. They like to "dip" into the subordinate position to get a back rub, maybe it is bad role modeling to rub and pat their backs. we'll keep an eye on the RIRs and Barred Rocks to see if they are taking advantage.

    any suggestions on treating what appears to be a very sore spot on their skin? a warm soak, topical ointment, or antibiotic?

    Thanks !
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012

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