We have 7 hens and a rooster, and over the last few days I've noticed that a few of them appear to be molting, however everything I have read states that molting doesn't start until around 18months. We are in Maine and it has gotten quite cold over the last couple of weeks. I first noticed the rooster with some belly feathers that appeared scraggly looking and then, the chest of one of our Columbian hens. I immediately panicked as we had a bought of the northern fowl mite a couple of months ago. At the time the chickens and coop were treated with permethrin and responded well. After careful inspection I could not find any mites, the chickens are acting perfectly normal, and there is a slight slow down in egg production. I noticed today a bald spot on the neck of another hen that does not appear to have been pecked. Is there anything that I could be missing, or is this likely early molting?