Most of Flock is Losing Mid to Upper Back & Wing Feathers

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ctg2264, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. ctg2264

    ctg2264 Hatching

    Jul 16, 2019
    Hello, first time poster here. We have been trying to figure what is going on with our birds and now we are getting desperate, for we fear their feathers won't grow back in time for winter. Our first flock is almost a year old now and consists of 4 hens (2 ISA browns, and 2 Barred Rocks) and 2 Silver Lace Wyndotte Rosters.

    Most of the flock now is missing feathers, it started gradually a couple months ago and now the they look pretty ragged, they haven't gotten any worse but they haven't gotten any better either, and I don't seem them re-growing any of their featers. The 2 ISA Brown Hens are missing feathers on the top of their wings and are completely bald now on their mid to upper back. The 2 Barred Rock hens have a bald spot in the middle of their back. And one of the Silver Lace Wyndotte roosters is missing feathers similar to the ISA browns but even more so on his wings, also his skin (where the bald spots are) is bright red and clearly inflamed. But the other rooster, as well as the 2 Pekin ducks that they share their coup & run with, look fine with no missing feathers. Other then the feathers all the birds are behaving, eating, drinking, laying and pooping 100% normal, Every one of the hens lays everyday (sometimes one of the Barred Rocks doesn't).

    We use Pine shavings as the bedding and clean it fairly regularly, we've checked for mites and haven't found any (so far anyway), and we've tried spraying the affected areas with Peck-off and Vetericyn Plus, but nothing seems to be helping.

    I thought it might had been because our ratio is so far off, but I'm thrown off as to why one of the roosters looks this way too. We do now have a second flock now that is almost old enough to integrate into the original flock and they look fine (they live in the garage) but we are unsure of putting them out there with there with the rest of them for fear the same thing will happen to them.

    Thanks in advance for any advice on what to do, it will be much appreciated!
    Shadrach likes this.
  2. CluckNDoodle

    CluckNDoodle Crowing

    Jan 12, 2019
    :welcome Welcome to BYC! It would be helpful if you have some pictures you can share to better help others to determine what is causing the feather loss. Since you've already checked for mites/lice and didn't find any and from your description it does sounds a lot like feather loss from excessive breeding. 2 roosters over 4 hens may be too much loving for the girls or you may have a rough rooster to begin with. There's also the possibility that the rooster that isn't missing any feathers may just be an outright bully or feather picker. You may have to spend some time out there with them or set up a camera to maybe get a better idea of what is causing it. Definitely post some pictures though and I'm sure others will have some ideas! Good luck with your flock!
  3. ChickNanny13

    ChickNanny13 Crossing the Road

    Jun 23, 2013
    The Big Island/Hawaii
    CluckNDoodle and Shadrach like this.
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    It sounds like a case of over breeding plus feather pecking/plucking - very likely on the part of the rooster that is in good feather.
  5. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

    Jul 31, 2018
    Catalonia, Spain
    My Coop
    Hello ctg2264
    Welcome to BYC.
    The feather loss sounds like it is due to mating. A lot of people get really concerned by this and blame often falls on the rooster.
    It seems that some hens are more prone to feather damge due to mating than others. Many years ago I had hens with completely bald backs and I'm talking about patches as large as my hand. They were fine other wise and all you could do was to make sure they didn't get sunburnt. The feathers should grow back before winter. They will mate less as the year progresses which will help.
    Have a look at your roosters spurs and toe nails one night. Take him off his perch and gently file away any sharp edges on his spurs and round off his toenails. While this won't necessarily stop feathers breaking it does reduce the chances of the skin getting cut.
  6. Shamo Hybrid

    Shamo Hybrid Songster

    Jun 6, 2018
    Molting + Over-mating = Raggedy Anne
    trumpeting_angel and ctg2264 like this.
  7. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    Yep, your culprit is likely the non nude one.
    Roosters aren't known for modesty so if he has nice feathers it sort of points his way. ;)
  8. ctg2264

    ctg2264 Hatching

    Jul 16, 2019
    Thank you for the advice, if that is the case should I quarantine the good feathered rooster? I attached 2 pictures (the worst looking hen & the other rooster), sorry they are blurry, they were not cooperating lol.

    Attached Files:

  9. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    Yes! If you don't want a nudist colony give the fella with feathers his own space.:)
  10. CluckNDoodle

    CluckNDoodle Crowing

    Jan 12, 2019
    Chickassan and raeleigh26 like this.

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