Silkies slow to feather in?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by wegotchickens, Jul 26, 2007.

  1. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    Hi all. My Silkies just aren't feathering right. Their top knots have feather shafts on most of the feathers, even though the shafts are in pieces. Should I comb the broken ones out? They still wrap around the feather but are not attached at the base.

    Also, my silkies wing feathers are scruffy looking. Some places have the main shaft but no strands along the sides. This is especially worse at the tip of some feathers.

    My Silkies are 14 weeks old. Are they normally scruffy and not fully fledged at 14 weeks? My other breeds are georgeous and fully feathered. Only the silkies are having feather issues, so i wondered if it was the breed.

    I'd give them vitamins, but I can't find any liquid ones locally. Where can order them?
  2. allen wranch

    allen wranch Crowing

    Jan 11, 2007
    San Marcos, TX
    Although your birds are chicks, I am moving this to the Breeds section since it is specific to Silkies. You should get a response there. Sorry I am not that familiar with Silkies.
  3. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Songster

    May 4, 2007
    I'm pretty sure that's just the breed. They have fluff their whole lives and do tend to look scruffy for a while....
  4. alex

    alex Songster

    Jul 1, 2007
    the wing is sepposed to look like that...and i think so are the feathers you where talking about...i own silkies to and they have funny wings's because silkies can not fly as good as other chickens...they prefer to be on the there sepposed to look like that...don't worry i own the and studied about them a lot..oh and when the grow up to be adults they look real fluffy and not sure what word to use ...
  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Silkies will always look scruffy as mentioned above. If you don't have show quality birds, they won't have huge crests or be those seriously puffy thing you see sometimes. The wing feathers especially can get beat up. As for the feather sheaths, just leave them alone and they will come off on their own. They can't preen the top of their heads so they can't take them off. Here is my silkie who I don't remember quite how old he is.

    Here he is at 7 weeks.


    And at 10 weeks (This is a link b/c the pic is like 4mb.)
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2007
  6. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    Thanks ya'll. I feel better now. The Orp's & Ameri's are so pretty I was afraid my Silkies weren't getting something they needed.

    My peeps are all from MyPetChicken, so they're probably not show quality....
  7. marie_martin

    marie_martin Songster

    Feb 21, 2007
    Grenada, MS
    I just posted a bunch of pics of my chicks, some are 14 weeks old, some are 11 weeks and some are 6 weeks. Go have a look and you will see that some just look a bit messy all the time. Just a silkie thing I guess. Also, I have read that males feather out slower in some cases. But I am by no means an expert. Just read that some place. You need to post pics so we can see!!

  8. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    I'm still learning about posting pics. Barely got my avatar!
    Hopefully I'll be able to make a personal page soon and put all kinds of pics on there. We've taken a million of 'em!
  9. Smoky73

    Smoky73 Lyon Master

    Feb 8, 2007
    If you are still wanting liquid vitamis for the birds, you can go to the pet section say at like Walmart and get some vitamins for caged birds like parakeets, or, you can use liquid vitamins for children in the baby aisle.
  10. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    I almost bought some caged bird vitamins at Wally World last night. I was concerned, though, since it specified seed eaters and my girls are eating a lot of bugs and leftovers in addition to their feed.

    Actually, a week before I first posted this question I started feeding the girls leftover fried foods, and noodle dishes made with butter. The Silkies are starting to look a bit more glossy on their backs. That's what Grandpa used to do when the bluetick hounds' coats were dull; increase the grease in their diet. Seems to work, since the Buffs and Ameri's are even glossier than before.

    The Silkies topsknots are still raggedy, though, as are their wings. The blue roo can fly good enough to get off the ground, though, so I guess even raggedy feathers get the job done! I'll be more patient, and check into the baby liquid vitamins the next time I start worrying.

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