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My chicken doesn't have any feathers on her chest!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by aroper15, Oct 30, 2016.

  1. aroper15

    aroper15 New Egg

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    Oct 30, 2016
    My hen whom I have had for about 2 1/2 years doesn't have any feathers on her chest. There isn't even any of the beginning of feathers. There is nothing there. The skin turns bright red and makes her really cold on chilly days. She is normal besides that. She lays eggs and eats regularly. It is fall here and she is getting cold. What could be the cause and what can I do about it?

    Thanks for any help and information you can give me :)
     
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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  3. aroper15

    aroper15 New Egg

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    She hasn't always had it. I have checked for any kind of parasite and she doesn't seem to have any. I was researching around and it almost looks like she is pulling her feathers herself. Some common causes were protein deficiency, and stress but I have bought the highest protein feed I could find and she doesn't seem to be stressed. Thank you so much for that information. I really appreciate it.
     
  4. chickens really

    chickens really Overrun With Chickens

    To me it sounds like a bad habit..Self pecking...You could try this..Stop-Pick, It is red...Put it on the feathers and bald area...It is Cayenne pepper based and is repulsive to Birds....

    Cheers!
     
  5. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What breed is she?
    Could she be going broody? Broody hens often pluck their breast feathers out prior to going into full broody mode to help incubate the eggs.
    Has she moulted this year yet? If not, perhaps she is having a normal moult...this is the right time of year for it. Some chickens lose all their feathers in one or two areas and have notable bald patches, whereas others lose a few all over so you don't notice anything other than them looking jaded and raggy.

    I would not be too concerned if she is eating and laying and otherwise appears well. If you are concerned about frost bite, you can smear Vaseline or other grease over the bald area to protect the skin. I've had hens moult in the middle of winter and cope fine, so the baldness in itself is not something to worry too much about and it's much better on her chest/belly area than on her neck or back where she will lose much more body heat.
     
  6. aroper15

    aroper15 New Egg

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    Thank you for the information. She is a Red Star aka( Red Comet, Isa Brown). She hasn't molted this year. She is only two years old. She has stopped laying now probably trying to conserve her energy for warmth. She now just goes off and sleeps in the corner and isn't her friendly normal self. Should I be worried?
     
  7. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Sounds like she's broody.
     
  8. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Less likely to be broody if she is a high production bird like a sex link but not impossible. Does she growl and fluff up her feathers when you approach her? Try putting an egg in front of her and see if she is interested in pulling it under her.
    If she is 2years old and she hasn't moulted yet, then my bet is with a moult. That can make them feel pretty miserable. Give her some extra protein treats (meal worms/scrambled egg meat scraps etc) and a bit of tlc. Most sex links I've come across are pretty stoic about moulting.... not like some other birds I have, that look totally miserable.... but just like humans I suppose, they all have different tolerance levels to discomfort.

    Anyway, the likelihood is that it is one or the other, but keep a close eye on her and ensure that she is getting plenty of good nutrition. Replacing feathers requires extra protein and being broody takes a lot out of them condition wise, so it's important to ensure they get extra nutritional support.

    Please keep us posted and report anything else that makes you think it's not one of the above options.
     
  9. aroper15

    aroper15 New Egg

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    I had tried the egg thing, she just tried to peck it. She doesn't like to be touched at all, but she never has ever since she was a chick. Ill try to give her extra protein. Thanks for the information!
     
  10. aroper15

    aroper15 New Egg

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    So I went out to clean the coop today and I noticed more feathers on the ground that usual. I checked the chicken with little feathers. She is now losing her wing feathers. The stalks are left, it's just the fuzzy parts that are gone. Also around her vent area is going bald too. The skin with no feathers is bright red. Help?
     

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