My RIR is plucking the feathers from her bottom...among other wierd...


In the Brooder
10 Years
Apr 25, 2009
Littleton, Colorado
I've looked at her bottom....way below the vent....and it looks raw and irritated.....feathers broken like she's trying to get them out. She was standing in the pond yesterday, as if the water was cooling her off. NONE of the hens have ever gone in the water. She's eating and drinking and going about scratching and schooling the small chicks, but her bum doesn't look comfortable. I checked closely for mites, lice, prolapse (can't miss that) or anything for a clue. Got any ideas? Thanks, you're all so good at detective work!!!


10 Years
May 15, 2009
Broken feathers are a sure sign of mites. You said she is 'schooling' the small chicks. Did she recently hatch them? I would dust her with poultry dust very well. Make sure you get her tummy and her vent area. Ruffle your fingers through her feathers to get the dust down to the skin. That's where the mites like to feed.

Is she in a laying box all by herself and new chicks? Where ever she is sleeping or spending a lot of time needs to be cleaned out. Take out the bedding and dust everything especially any cracks or tiny holes the mites like to hide in during the day. Replace with fresh bedding. If she is raising chicks this is very important because mites can easily kill chicks.

She is your first priority but when you get time dust each chicken, clean the coop, dust everything and add new bedding. It's good to get this under control before winter.

Broken feathers can be really irritating. I would stand in cool water myself! If she has only a few get a really good grip on the base of the feather with a good pair of tweezers, hold the skin tight and pull the base out. I would do two at a time and not more than every other day. She will grow new feathers soon poor thing.

Good luck.

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