Losing feathers- molting??

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by evekelly, Oct 17, 2016.

  1. evekelly

    evekelly Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 6, 2015
    My hens have been acting weird all summer. One quit laying at the beginning of the summer. She also lost her feathered on her abdomen. She is very broody. Now my other two have quit laying. But one of them is losing feathers in a major way. I think she is molting. I'm sure they don't have mites or lice. Here is a picture. She first had lost the feathers on her abdomen but now her wings and tail feathers are gone. Please let me know if it's molting or something else. Picture attached. [​IMG][/IMG][/IMG]
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Yep, molting.
     
  3. evekelly

    evekelly Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 6, 2015
    Thanks! Any advice? Does it seem kind of late in the year for molting? Although the weather has been unseasonably warm here it is about to get cold here in Chicagoland and I'm worried about them getting cold. I did also read to feed them extra protein. Any other thoughts.
     
  4. evekelly

    evekelly Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 6, 2015
    Also, she didn't lose feathers in her head and neck like I have read normally happens. Is that normal?
     
  5. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Some very slowly molt just one bit at a time, others drop every last feather in just a matter of hours. Molting can start as early as July, or as late as January. And that's all perfectly normal.
    While molting, they usually stop laying. Layer feed has just enough protein for egg production, but not nearly enough for feather growth. Besides, molting usually causes them to stop laying, so they don't need all the calcium in layer feed either.
    A feed with at least 18% protein will help get those feathers grown back in as fast as possible.
     
  6. evekelly

    evekelly Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 6, 2015
    Thank you. That is helpful. My black australorp hasn't laid an egg all summer long. Yet, she is broody. I think she may be molting slowly. I don't know, though, she sits in the box for hours and isn't even laying. I think she might have even plucked out her feathers on her lower abdomen between her legs. Not sure what is up with her. The other two Americaunas, of which the picture is one, just stopped laying.
    Thanks again for the info.
     
  7. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    The Australorp is broody.
     

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