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no feathers along belly of chicks

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lsutigers1809, Mar 10, 2013.

  1. lsutigers1809

    lsutigers1809 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 4, 2013
    louisian
    hello i have about 20 chicks bout 3 weeks old most all of them don't have feathers along their breast bone i was wondering if anyone may know what's going on with that
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Are they on wire? They are likely rubbing them off on something -- unless they have lice / mites, though these are more likely to be found around the vent and under the wings.
     
  3. lsutigers1809

    lsutigers1809 Out Of The Brooder

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    louisian
    No i put pine straw down in the brooder and change it every day unless they rub it off on the straw
     
  4. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    This may sound crazy ...but ..chickens losing feathers on their breast bone are likely to be broody... are any of yours spending a lot of time in nesting boxes>

    Something to consider but it would be bizzare to find so may broody at the same time.
     
  5. wsfarmgirl

    wsfarmgirl Out Of The Brooder

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    I have 2 girls with the same issue. No wire. Could it be the roost?
     
  6. lsutigers1809

    lsutigers1809 Out Of The Brooder

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    louisian
    Mine are 3 week old chicks
     
  7. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    Stupid me... I did not read your post clearly... 3 weeks of age would not be broody....! Sorry!

    I would not imagine that a three week old chick would use a roost.... more likely to be the bedding as already mentioned.
     
  8. wsfarmgirl

    wsfarmgirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Mine are about 2 years old, and don't believe to be broody, so concerned...
     
  9. lsutigers1809

    lsutigers1809 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 4, 2013
    louisian
    Pine straw is the bedding guess that could be doing it
     
  10. stefan333

    stefan333 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It seems like this might have gotten posted twice, so I'll just cut and paste what I wrote on the other one here, too. Not sure about a lot of the answers you're getting, cause this is normal. If any of you guys got chickens who actually grow feathers on their breast bone please let me know, cause I have over 60 chickens and none of mine actually grow them on their breast bone.

    Very normal. 3 week old chickens tend to look a little ragged while they're getting all there feathers in. I've found that Orps and Australorps look the most crazy. Also, here's a quote from Gail Damerow's book "Hatching and Brooding Your Own Chicks":

    "Unlike a mammal's fur, feathers do not grow over the entire body surface of a chicken or other type of poultry. Instead, the feathers grow in small, symmetrical tracts and fan out to cover the body. The feather tracts are separated by featherless areas in which some down may grow, even in mature poultry."

    There's more, but that pretty much gets the point across. Also she has a diagram on the page showing where the feather and featherless tracts are. One of the featherless tracts on a chicken is the breast bone. They'll start filling in a lot more as they age and their feathers fan out, but for right now they might look a bit funny.
     
    Kareyg likes this.

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