Red Bald Butt, Mites? Feather Plucking? A little help please!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by LadyBclucky, Jun 1, 2012.

  1. LadyBclucky

    LadyBclucky In the Brooder

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    Sep 10, 2010
    Cherryland, CA
    Please help! I have a 2 year old australorp who has a tendency to go broody, last year she went broody and she got a red bald butt... We thought someone was picking on her, so we busted her broodieness and gave her extra protein and she feathered up nicely. Last month she started acting broody but I nipped it in the bud before she went full on broody, but... Her butt is red and bald. I have been researching mites thinking maybe she got them while spending extra time in her wood nest box. But I havent found one bug on her, but I don't really know what I am looking for . I keep a clean coop and I'm liberal with DE in the nest boxes. But we do get those darn wild birds in our run and coop a lot. I saw some red dust in my coop on the white walls so I'm going to treat for mites, but she is on the bottom of the pecking order so I was wondering if this is feather plucking. No other hens have bald butts, could she be the only one with mites or is this a feather plucking issue? I haven't seen any feathery plucking either but this weekend I'll keep an eye out.
    And just to make everyone's day I thought I'd share this lovely sight:
    [=https://www.backyardchickens.com/gallery/image/view/album/6035435/id/5141581/sort/display_order#][/

    Any advise? Thanks! This weekend I'm going to start treating for mites but I wanted to know what you all thought.
     
  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Treat the birds with an insecticide, and clean and treat the coop with one as well. You will need to do it all again in 10 days, so go sparing with the bedding in the mean time.

    I think you are dealing with feather picking. Bare butts are indicative of that, but in light of the red dust inside the coop it is better to be certain than sorry when your hens start dropping dead from blood loss.

    I think you should probably take some time to do a little flock watch. A few hours (preferably with a glass of wine in hand and friends to keep you company) of close monitoring should reveal any feather pickers. If you see any feather picking going on then you will need to separate the culprit for several weeks to try to break the habit.
     
  3. LadyBclucky

    LadyBclucky In the Brooder

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    Thanks CMV! I originally thought it could be feather plucking... But I was told it sounded like mites, I've treated there area now I'm trying to figure out the Ivermectin stuff.... I bought injectable 1%, but I was told I could pour it on.... :-( I don't think that the person selling me this knew what they were talking about, because I can't find any info to support that....
     
  4. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    The resident parasite expert is dawg53. Send him a PM and ask him.

    Good luck.
     
  5. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Go out to the coop at night with a flashlight and look for mites crawling on roosts, nests, walls, their legs etc...If you dont see any, it's a feather picker and follow CMV's advice.
     
  6. nonsuch

    nonsuch Songster

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    Mar 22, 2011
    Poy Sippi, WI
    I have a similar problem, and am at my wit's end! Last fall one of my Black Copper Marans appeared to be molting. She never really improved and then they all appeared to be losing feathers at the base of their tails (they are not in with a roo). Next I found large areas around the vents and under their wings that were bald and pink. They also have white specs at the top of their necks and on their heads. I've treated them with Ivermectin twice (two weeks apart) cleaned and sprayed their coop, dusted with DE, and have dusted then with "poultry dust" - Sevin. They do not appear to be improving and the feathers are not growing back. Any suggestions are appreciated!
     
  7. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Establish which birds are picking and separate them out for about a month. Increase the picker's protein intake while separated to make sure to address any deficiencies. If you have multiple culprits they must be housed separately from the flock and from each other. All pickers must be isolated for several weeks. After a month or so start re-introducing each bird one at a time so they get the full glory of the pecking order rained down on their heads. Start with the least dominant pickers first. Monitor the flock closely each time you introduce one of the pickers. If the picker so much as plucks a single feather, then back to jail for a few more weeks. Rinse and repeat until you either have a pick-less flock, or until you decide to start culling to stop the behavior.

    Good luck.
     
  8. boogiedog

    boogiedog Songster

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    Background, I have a enclosed run and coop with 25 birds. Several months back, I had a flock of bald-butted chickens (they were all about one-ish years old at the time). I feed high protein food (meat bird feed mixed with 20% layers pellets; no scratch - Jose Gueroro game bird feed for treats) and offer daily fresh veggies. Solution - I put pinless plastic peepers on everyone and voila - all had fuzzy butts in no time.
     
  9. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    You were lucky. Pinless peepers are great, but they don't always prove effective for the most determined feather pickers.
     

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