Plucking its self plz help

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jackcooper, Feb 9, 2015.

  1. jackcooper

    jackcooper Out Of The Brooder

    54
    1
    43
    Feb 19, 2014
    United Kingdom
    Hi my buff orp has just been sat under a tree plucking its feathers out. It has only plucked about 25 or so but I don't know what is going on as I am new to chickens and only owned them for half a year. It is February here so could it be either malting or just pruning its self. If anyone has any idea then it would be a great help to me.
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,690
    2,639
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    If she's pecking them out, it's not molting.
    If on the breast, she could be lining a nest to go broody.
    It could also be a desire for protein.
    What makes up the feed? Protein percentages?
     
  3. jackcooper

    jackcooper Out Of The Brooder

    54
    1
    43
    Feb 19, 2014
    United Kingdom
    Hi it's pecking its self all around the body and I don't know the percentage of protein but they eat layers pellets
     
  4. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,690
    2,639
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Layer pellets are usually around 16% protein. The percentage is always on the ingredient label and sometimes on the bag itself.
    Try supplementing with a bit of canned tuna or mackerel for a couple days and see if the habit goes away.
     
  5. jackcooper

    jackcooper Out Of The Brooder

    54
    1
    43
    Feb 19, 2014
    United Kingdom
    Ok thanx for your help
     
  6. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,690
    2,639
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    One should always know the ingredients of their chicken feed. Protein and calcium percentage as well as what makes up the protein. For instance is it from animal or vegetative and synthetic sources.

    Are you feeding anything besides layer pellets?
     
  7. jackcooper

    jackcooper Out Of The Brooder

    54
    1
    43
    Feb 19, 2014
    United Kingdom
    I am feeding them the odd kitchen scraps e.g cabbage , lettuce , seeded bread
     
  8. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,690
    2,639
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Ok, and table/kitchen scraps fed to chickens is a good use of an otherwise wasted commodity.
    Just keep in mind that chicken feed is formulated as a complete ration. Anything else will affect nutrition.
    Greens and bread are low in protein and will lower the overall intake.
    So if feeding those, one should also provide some animal protein to balance out the amino acid intake.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2015
  9. jackcooper

    jackcooper Out Of The Brooder

    54
    1
    43
    Feb 19, 2014
    United Kingdom
    Ok what do you feed yours for a balanced diet
     
  10. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

    21,690
    2,639
    466
    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    I feed a 16% organic grower feed providing calcium in the form of oyster shell in separate containers for those actively laying.
    The feed is a complete ration, as are almost any chicken feeds you can buy.
    If I'm feeding chicks, I add fishmeal at a ratio of 1:10 to raise the protein to 20%.

    I do feed table scraps but with anywhere from 30-100 chickens, each one is lucky to get a bite.

    I also give some animal protein in the form of grilled raccoon/trapped predators or grilled meat that is past it's best by date.

    They forage as well but half the year it provides very little but entertainment. In the dead of winter I sprout or grow short fodder from wheat, barley, peas or buckwheat but that still makes up less than 5-10% of the diet.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2015

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by