Molting... Now?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by redstars, Sep 23, 2010.

  1. redstars

    redstars Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 15, 2009
    south dartmouth ma
    Is it normal for chickens to molt this time of year?
    I am thinking it's getting a little cold to be without a coat.
    Also how long till new feathers come in?
    Thanks.
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Excellent questions. These sites give pretty good answers and interesting details.

    Mississippi State describes molting
    http://msucares.com/poultry/management/poultry_feathers.html

    Kansas State feather loss
    http://www.ksre.ksu.edu/library/lvstk2/mf2308.pdf

    Quick answers. Chickens normally molt when the days get shorter. It is their signal to quit laying and use the energy that was going into making eggs to make new feathers instead. In nature, they need to do their egg laying and hatching in the spring and summer when it is easier to raise chicks.

    It can be anywhere between 2 and 6 months. The Mississippi State site has a good explanation on that.
     

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