Tail feathers question.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Greencastle, Jul 8, 2016.

  1. Greencastle

    Greencastle Out Of The Brooder

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    I got some pullets a few weeks ago. A few of them are missing tail feathers due to over crowding and getting picked on. They are approximately 4 months old and Marans. Will the tail feathers grow back or do they have to molt first?
     
  2. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    From my experience they will grow back if they were pulled out. If they were broken they may need to molt first. They should go through a few juvenile molts before they are a year old and may grow them back then. In the mean time watch for feather pulling or plucking as when new feathers are growing in it attracts a lot of unwanted attention. If they do start getting pecked at you can use Pick No More or Blu Kote to stop the behavior.
     
  3. Greencastle

    Greencastle Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you very much. One of the is a cuckoo rooster and a rooster should have a tail ! Lol.
     
  4. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes he should. It is like a biker with no bike lol. Not much sadder then a rooster with no tail.
     
  5. ChickenKeep01

    ChickenKeep01 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They will grow back when I got mine they were 11 weeks old and had not tails so I was going to call one stumpy but now w they all have tails
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    They could also be going thru a juvenile molt.
     
  7. Greencastle

    Greencastle Out Of The Brooder

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    I forgot that the do that (molts within year one). I'll bet that's what it is. None had tail feathers when I got them, now only one doesn't, the cuckoo rooster.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Best to look closely at skin around 'missing' feathers....see if there are healthy pin feathers coming in or signs of pecking or other problems.

    New pin feathers can be a target for pecking, and if they break they can bleed which increases the target potential.
    Had a young cockerel in that situation, broken pin feather on tail was bleeding copiously and had to be plucked totally (using hemostats as pliers) out to stop it.
     

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