Shortly after my hens started laying, some of them began loosing their fluffy little feathers underneath their vent. I asked about it at the feed store, and several folks I've talked to said it was just because they were beginning to lay and it would resolve itself soon. Well... they never went back to normal, so then folks said they were molting and would start to look better when the days got longer. I walked down the road yesterday to see the chickens one of our neighbors have in their yard and those girls look nothing like mine. Their owner said one molted about a month ago, but she only looked scraggly for a couple weeks. My poor little chickens look like they came out of a concentration camp... This is the first time I've had chickens of my own, and they're about 10 months old. It is a mixed breed flock, 1 each: Rhode Island Red, Buff Orpington, EE, Barred Rock, Delaware, and a mutt. Egg production is good considering they didn't have a light most of the winter. I feed them layer pellets, scratch, vegetable scraps/leftovers, sometimes yogurt. I mix grit and oyster shell with their pellets. They are in a coop but I let them scratch around in the yard when I'm home, especially on the weekends. We have hawks that perch in our trees or I'd let them out more... What's really confusing me is that I have one chicken who lives by herself in a rabbit hutch because she almost died, spent a long time living in the house, and I can't get the flock to take her back. She acts more like a little dog now than a chicken anyway... But she still has nice, healthy feathers, and she's been laying since Christmas. Ideas? What am I not doing?