Not molting hens???

paloozaparty

Chirping
Apr 28, 2020
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We have 3, 18mo hens (born June 2019), 3 pullets from the hens (born May 2020). I understand (from reading on here) that pullets don't molt first year. Of our hens, 1 (brahma) went broody out of nowhere, this past August, for about 2 weeks, then started molting (apparently), for about a solid month (give or take a couple weeks)--i thought that was early for molt--and of course worried that she was having a health crisis instead--but now she looks beautifully fully feathered. However, the other 2 haven't molted whatsoever. I don't know why I feel like I have to torture you all with asking if that's normal and or could they molt still this season? We're in Colorado and having an obvious fall (colder temps, etc).
 

TooCheep

Crowing
Feb 23, 2019
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Indiana
I had one hen that molted late and hard and the temperatures overnight dived down well below freezing. She nearly died and I brought her into the house for a week to recover. Just keep an eye on them and if someone is in deep molt when serious cold hits, you might want to take some precautions. I ended up putting a heating pad (on a thermostat) into the coop for them to get near if they felt the need. They only occasionally did.

Note that this is not the general scenario, just an extreme case.
 

paloozaparty

Chirping
Apr 28, 2020
151
146
73
Thank you both!!! I'd gladly move them inside of they molt during colder weather! Thanks for letting me know to look for middle winter molt! Ahhh poor hens!
 

TooCheep

Crowing
Feb 23, 2019
658
4,416
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Indiana
Cold-hardy chickens can take a lot. The biggest thing is to protect them from wet and direct drafts in the coop. A regular/light molt isn't much to worry about, but in my case she had large areas without feather cover.
 

Wyorp Rock

Blessed
Premium Feather Member
Sep 20, 2015
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We have 3, 18mo hens (born June 2019), 3 pullets from the hens (born May 2020). I understand (from reading on here) that pullets don't molt first year. Of our hens, 1 (brahma) went broody out of nowhere, this past August, for about 2 weeks, then started molting (apparently), for about a solid month (give or take a couple weeks)--i thought that was early for molt--and of course worried that she was having a health crisis instead--but now she looks beautifully fully feathered. However, the other 2 haven't molted whatsoever. I don't know why I feel like I have to torture you all with asking if that's normal and or could they molt still this season? We're in Colorado and having an obvious fall (colder temps, etc).
Are the other 2 still laying eggs?
Most birds that age do molt in the fall or at around 18 months, some don't. Each bird has their own timing. I would just wait and see how it goes.
Of course your temps may be lower than mine in winter, but I've had hens naked in the winter when night temps were in the 20s and they were fine as long as they had protection from the wind.
 

paloozaparty

Chirping
Apr 28, 2020
151
146
73
Are the other 2 still laying eggs?
Most birds that age do molt in the fall or at around 18 months, some don't. Each bird has their own timing. I would just wait and see how it goes.
Of course your temps may be lower than mine in winter, but I've had hens naked in the winter when night temps were in the 20s and they were fine as long as they had protection from the wind.
Yes the others are still laying--i think. I just posted about my current egg laying question in another thread... I have 3 18mo and 3 5mo. Someone is laying speckled eggs and I think it's a new layer in the 5mo's. And I think the molting brahma is NOT laying-- and maybe 2 pullets are laying and maybe only 1 hen. I'm trying to figure out who is doing what :)
 

Wyorp Rock

Blessed
Premium Feather Member
Sep 20, 2015
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Southern N.C. Mountains
Yes the others are still laying--i think. I just posted about my current egg laying question in another thread... I have 3 18mo and 3 5mo. Someone is laying speckled eggs and I think it's a new layer in the 5mo's. And I think the molting brahma is NOT laying-- and maybe 2 pullets are laying and maybe only 1 hen. I'm trying to figure out who is doing what :)
Yes, I saw your other thread, good tips from RidgeRunner, maybe you can figure out who is laying that particle beautiful egg.
 

paloozaparty

Chirping
Apr 28, 2020
151
146
73
That's good to know. What I didn't clarify is that the 3 pullets that are from their mother--were from me hatching their incubated eggs :) the 3 hens don't even know the pullets are theirs--in fact, they're not integrating well... Our 1 lead hen is relentless at the 3 pullets (specifically around food). She's then influenced the other 2 to be nippy and mean to the pullets.
 

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