1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

rooster missing his neck & beard feathers

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Lisa202, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. Lisa202

    Lisa202 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2010
    Long Island NY
    Would anyone know why and how that would happen? It seems to have happened overnight. He is a young guy, but he and the 4 others have been integrated since December and he's already been mounting some of them. I've only seen one hen challenge him and he doesn't back down, so I can't believe that one of them is getting close enough to pull out those feathers and he would just sit there and take it. The bare spot is at least 2 inches down his neck and up to both ears.
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

    Nov 7, 2012
    It's happening to all of my EE... My dominant hen appears to be excessively grooming them on the roost at night. If it continues past the spring, I'll have to quarantine her, and if that doesn't stop her, i'll invite her to dinner.
  3. Lisa202

    Lisa202 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2010
    Long Island NY
    hmmmm...I once had a mean girl that pecked their behind feathers off, but I've never heard of this. He's the only one that has this, so far. I guess I'll have to go in and watch them when they go up to roost. I tried to cure my last one, but nothing worked, she was just a mean girl. She ended up moving to a "nice farm in the country".
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    This is probably happening when they relax and preen themselves, not necessarily at night on their roosting perch.

    I've had this happen to a rooster who was very docile, and also intimidated by a quartet of very saucy Sussex. They were and still are like a little gang of thugs. Hens like this group together close to the roo, and nibble on his neck or other feathers, saddle feathers being another favorite. I don't understand either why he lets them do it because having feathers yanked out does hurt.The feathers yanked out will grow back, but my rooster's feathers were "chewed" into tatters, and he only was able to grow new ones at the time of fall molt.

    Feather picking has a number of causes. You need to figure out if just one culprit is behind this or several. Having only one culprit is easier to deal with. Pinless peepers are invaluable for curing short term behavior problems such as this.

    If you have more than one, you might suspect a nutritional cause. Usually improper utilizing of nutrients is responsible and you will have to address that. Recently, I've had great results in curtailing feather picking by feeding fermented feed.

    When it comes to curing feather picking, sometimes you just have to throw the kitchen sink at it and hope something ends up working.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by