Five weeks ago, one of our two year old Gold Sex Link hens appeared to be getting ill (standing apart from flock, staying in coop when flock free ranged, decreased appetite and, `frowzy' feathers - otherwise asymptomatic). Kept her inside for a couple days (scoped for worms), gave Polyvisol and undistilled vinegar, along with plenty of meal worms, and switched back to Game Bird Flight Conditioner for all the chooks. However, she continued to mope/fade (or so it seemed). Last saturday cass noticed that she was going out with the flock again. I picked her up on monday and she felt like a shaved porcupine with a two day shadow - quills all over! I'm posting because the `unkempt' feathering seems to be a sign that might be useful in working towards an accurate differential diagnosis of a hen suffering what is otherwise nothing more specific than a generalized lingering malaise (at least one can rule out a hard molt that lacks the immediate loss of old feathers). Saw nothing to match this during previous molt. If anyone knows the term that is used to describe this sort of feathering (vanes appear to be seperated into sections), please post. She preens and is back to dirt bathing, but the old feathers are looking about the same as they did when I first observed her getting puny. New feathers on head and neck. Bet she'll be glad to no longer look like a used up duster. Molting isn't a disease, but it had me fooled.