Massive Feather Loss

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by I'm1chickencuddler, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. I'm1chickencuddler

    I'm1chickencuddler Out Of The Brooder

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    May 31, 2011
    A friend of a friend had to get rid of her flock of 11 ladies. I acquired 4. A dominique, a Rhode Island red, a buff orpington, and a bizarre looking but beautiful creature by the name of "Weirdo". All looked and acted very healthy. No mites or lice or anything external. The usual getting to know you pecking order establishment behavior from all. The RI red all of a sudden started losing massive feathers. She would just be walking and they would fall off her. Not broken or from picking or from getting picked on. Now all 4 new girls have lost the majority of their feathers. The dominique(Oreo), the buff(Honey), the RI(Wendy), and Weirdo are almost bald. It is winter. The vet has no clue. They are eating normally, still laying, and behaving normally. It looks like a massacre out in my designated chicken area from all the feather loss. It is not a normal molt. Is is just stress? It is winter and they must be cold. They are warm in the coop at night and some days it gets very cold, below freezing, during the day here. What, if anything, do I need to do? Is it just stress from being moved twice? HELP!!!![​IMG]
     
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    23,342
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    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    I'm1chickencuddler :

    A friend of a friend had to get rid of her flock of 11 ladies. I acquired 4. A dominique, a Rhode Island red, a buff orpington, and a bizarre looking but beautiful creature by the name of "Weirdo". All looked and acted very healthy. No mites or lice or anything external. The usual getting to know you pecking order establishment behavior from all. The RI red all of a sudden started losing massive feathers. She would just be walking and they would fall off her. Not broken or from picking or from getting picked on. Now all 4 new girls have lost the majority of their feathers. The dominique(Oreo), the buff(Honey), the RI(Wendy), and Weirdo are almost bald. It is winter. The vet has no clue. They are eating normally, still laying, and behaving normally. It looks like a massacre out in my designated chicken area from all the feather loss. It is not a normal molt. Is is just stress? It is winter and they must be cold. They are warm in the coop at night and some days it gets very cold, below freezing, during the day here. What, if anything, do I need to do? Is it just stress from being moved twice? HELP!!!![​IMG]

    I agree with your assessment. The stress of the move into a new environment probably triggered the molt. If they are in a hard molt, consider moving them into your garage if you have one, let them out during the day when it's warmer above freezing.​
     
  3. I'm1chickencuddler

    I'm1chickencuddler Out Of The Brooder

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    May 31, 2011
    I've been giving them more corn to help give them the extra fat they may need to keep warm during the day. I tried putting them in my garage and it seemed to stress them even more. These poor girls have had it tough. As soon as I put them back in the chicken yard, they get picked on hardcore. I have entertained erecting a temporary fence to keep them separated during the day. I just want to know if it is something the vet is missing. Any other advice? The only thing the vet said is to possibly deworm my whole flock just in case although all fecal smears have come back negative for worms. Thank you for the garage advice. I appreciate it.
     

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