Trouble shedding quills (?) off new feather growth

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by darbella, Jun 21, 2010.

  1. darbella

    darbella Songster

    Nov 2, 2008
    New Hampshire
    I have a small hen that has a lot of new feather growth on her underside, they are all about an inch long and she looks like a porcupine. They seem to be on her underside closest to the vent area. She also seems to want to lay down as if she is broody a lot. She prefers to keep her head turned to the side and will look foreward when I come into the coop. She has been ill in the past with suspected Marek's and I did the hypercium treatment and in 24 hours she looked like a brand new bird. I was going to have a friend come and cull her for me because Idont have the heart to do it, or the guts, but when I go into the coop, she will get up and come to the bars of her cage looking for a treat. Her appetite has allways been finicky so I give her scrambled eggs occasionally. She has allways been in her own cage and not with other birds, but is in the same coop with my caged pairs. I am just puzzled and need to hear some ideas on what other more experienced folks think this could be. A few months ago she laid 5 eggs and then stopped. She does not appear to be egg bound or have anything wrong with her vent. It is clean and color there is good although the color on her face and legs in very pale, but she is a pynchon and I think I read that they do have white legs.
  2. darbella

    darbella Songster

    Nov 2, 2008
    New Hampshire
    Quote:I am not sure, maybe this did not get posted in the right place??? ANy suggestions if I should move it? I ahve PM's several of the people on here that seem to know a lot about illnesses but no one has gotten back to me. MAybe this has not been heard of and no one knows? Wrong thread?? HELP!
  3. SuziQ991

    SuziQ991 Songster

    Aug 18, 2009
    Sorry, but I don't know the answer. Hopefully someone will help.
  4. darbella

    darbella Songster

    Nov 2, 2008
    New Hampshire
    Quote:I just cannot believe with all the knowlegable folks on the boards that no one has even commented on this issue. It is so sad, today I brought her the scrambled egg and she took a piece and tried to swallow it but it fell out of her mouth. Maybe this is something no one has encountered so they dont know what to say? [​IMG]
  5. SallyF

    SallyF Songster 9 Years

    Jul 5, 2009
    Middle Tennessee
    I'm sorry no one has any words of wisdom for you. I have never encountered anything like this, so I have none either. Sometimes the only thing you can do is wait and see. I did copy this for you from another BYC posting. I have read of several people who have been helped by this guy.
    "Also, you might want to contact Dr. Peter Brown and see if he can further advise you. His number is 1-800-950-8387 and his email address is [email protected] . He's helped many a BYC'er and I'm sure will touch base with you as soon as possible." Good luck with your chickie.
  6. I'm so sorry, but her symptoms do all sound a little vague and I can't quite put them toegther. But I'll try:

    The quills - I personally wouldn't worry about this. My black australorp has never managed to get the dander off her adult feathers in exactly the area you're talking about. I assume she is so heavily feathered that her neck simply isn't long enough! I sometimes help her by grasping a feather between my fingers and roll it around so the dander comes off - but there are dozens, so often I do about ten then give up! She seems to love it though!

    The laying down - could just be boredom, if she's alone in a pen without any company. If she was broody she would be showing other signs - the broody 'voice', refusing to get off the nest and going straight back if physically removed, etc. She might be unwell, however, so I'd keep an eye on this symptom and watch for signs of further deterioration.

    Lack of eggs - now that's strange. If she laid and then stopped, chances are she's an internal layer. You may want to do a search for 'internal layer' on this board and you will get thousands of words of wisdom - far too much for me to post here. Sad to say though, it's a very serious condition and there's almost nothing you can do to cure it (except expensive and very risky surgery). It might be an idea to look into it and see if your hen's symptoms match the examples others have given...

    Pale face - not always a cause for concern, but if her comb and wattles are also pale, chances are she could be feeling under the weather. They also go paler when a bird stops ovulating for some reason eg molting or broodiness.

    Unable to eat - Now this is absolutely a worry. She must be feeling poorly if she can't hold anything in her beak. Did she try again after it fell out, or lose interest? I'd rule out all the obvious stuff - worms, mites, lice, eggbinding, internal laying, crop impaction, then I would take her to a vet for an examination.

    I'm sorry I couldn't be more help.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2010
  7. darbella

    darbella Songster

    Nov 2, 2008
    New Hampshire
    I had started this thread a while back. It appears that my littel gal was suffering from a vitamin B deficiency. I gave her to someone to cull, and when she saw her she asked if she may try some B with her and she is doing great! I cant believe it was a simple as that. Her neck has straitened out and she is acting like a normal chicken with her new little pyncheon mate. Gypsy says they are inseperable and haviing a ball!

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