Molting Question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by OpheliaChick, Nov 16, 2009.

  1. OpheliaChick

    OpheliaChick Out Of The Brooder

    71
    1
    39
    Jul 9, 2009
    CT
    I'm really not sure where to post this so if it is the wrong area I apologize. [​IMG]

    I was wondering if chickens molt in the winter. If they do, do you have to keep them in the coop because they don't have enough feathers to keep them warm? This will be my first winter with chickens. My ladies have yet to go through their first molt but I wanted to be prepared in case they did in the cold months (that's if they even can).
     
  2. OpheliaChick

    OpheliaChick Out Of The Brooder

    71
    1
    39
    Jul 9, 2009
    CT
    Anyone?
     
  3. PeeperKeeper

    PeeperKeeper Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm sure it can get colder in CT than in KY. I have some hens starting to molt now and I fear some will be molting even later this winter too. Mine are free ranged but always have access to the coop. We are trying to fix the coop so there are now major drafts this winter if the big door and the run doors are open. I have a Turken that has been molt stage since July! This morning, she looked even more featherless. We are just scratching our heads and... [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2009
  4. OpheliaChick

    OpheliaChick Out Of The Brooder

    71
    1
    39
    Jul 9, 2009
    CT
    Does anyone know if chickens molt in the winter or not? [​IMG]
     
  5. JanieMarie

    JanieMarie Chillin' With My Peeps

    701
    6
    141
    Aug 26, 2008
    Georgetown, Minnesota
    I cant tell you why but yes they can molt in winter. I had a batch of leghorns that would molt in the middle of winter. And very cold here in MN. They seemed to come thru it fine tho.
     
  6. write2caroline

    write2caroline Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,156
    52
    218
    Jun 21, 2009
    Jacksonville
    I am not even sure what real molting looks like. I see feathers but no naked chickens - I have parakeets too that have never had bald spots except the one time they laid eggs and my female decided to bare her chest and sit on the eight tiniest eggs ever (none hatched) The only time I have seen birds that look like "molt" are stressed birds? But I don't know. My chickens are new. I see a flux of feathers during climate changes colder to hotter. Usually not the other way around. I see the big feathers loose from time to time but the little warming feathers only when the climate changes and always colder to hotter and I used to keep my parakeets outside on the screened porch. My chickens are new for me and are less than a year old.

    I hope that helps but hopefully someone more knowledgable than me will answer better.
    Caroline
    Jax FL
     
  7. miche

    miche Out Of The Brooder

    16
    0
    22
    Mar 4, 2009
    Madison, WI
    Yes, they molt in winter. Seems silly. In our case, I think we set them up for this. They hatched July 1, and started laying in December. Our 4 mixed breed hens have been molting for about 3 months, and are just beginning to lay again. It's in the 20's/30's at night, and mid 40's during the day.

    Other discussion is in the "2 months without eggs - what's up?? by marthalazar" topic, under Chicken behaviors and Egglaying.
     
  8. OpheliaChick

    OpheliaChick Out Of The Brooder

    71
    1
    39
    Jul 9, 2009
    CT
    Thank you everyone!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by