Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by holderh, Dec 1, 2011.

  1. holderh

    holderh Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 13, 2011
    My new hens and rooster were missing alot of feathers around their butt and some on there back. The rooster was missing his entire tail and some on his neck. They are 7-8 months old and were given to me about 2 weeks ago. At first i thought that they were just missing the feathers on their back side (we were told this may have been due to feather pulling) but today we dusted them for lice and upon inspecting them it looked like they had new feathers all over their backs growing in. (the really fluffy feathers) ..i just wonder could it be possible that they had molted before we had gotten them and that all of the feathers had grown back except for the fluffy feathers that cover their butts and a few on their back? The rooster is really growing new feathers in. I am just really concerened with putting them in with my other hens after the quarentine is over if they were pulling each others feathers (as someone said you cant stop it once it starts).

    Also once they start free ranging do you think it will help them to leave each other alone if the problem was feather pulling? I havent noticed them pulling out each others feathers but i am not with them 24/7 either. I have noticed that one seems to be picked on and is sometimes bleeding some but she has a wing that looks to have been broken in the past and was heeled wrong so maybe they pick on her because she looks diffrent? I never see any of them pick on her just some blood afterwareds. We did seperate her frome the rest of the flock.

    Also, when we looked them over for lice we didnt see any bugs on them. ...are they too small to see or if they had them would we know? We are new to raising chickens and these are the first flock that we we are going to introduce to our original flock so i am pretty nervous about this. We have given them about a weeks worth of anti biotics in their water and was going to worm them, but is worming them really nessasary? They seem to be a normal weight, eat good, drink good and look healthy other than the missing feathers. We plan to quarentine 2 more weeks before putting them with the other girls...this would give us a total of 30 days.

    Sorry for all the rambling!! Thanks so much!
  2. BlazeJester

    BlazeJester Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 2, 2011
    Midway, GA

    It sounds like they were molting... apparently the last juvenile molt is around 6 months, so that may be about right. It could also have been a stress-induced molt from the move - mine went through that when I moved and stopped laying for 3 months (!!!)... turns out they were getting a little long in the tooth, too. I guess after laying eggs almost every day for an entire year you're entitled to a break [​IMG]

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