Two thin hens and two fat hens???


11 Years
Jan 4, 2010
Maine ~ 4 chicken years
I have four RIR hens, two of which are a few pounds thinner than the other two.
The other day I picked up my hens one at a time to put them back in their run and I noticed there was quite a difference in weight between them. The thinner two don't seem to have a protruding breast bone and are acting normal.

There has been no change to their food, layer crumbles and scraps. They all seem to be eating and drinking as far as I have seen.
Could this be a pecking order thing where the others are keeping them away from the food, or maybe worms? Or maybe the heavier ones are just FAT?
I have not seen any worms, how would I know if I don't see any?
They are all 7 mo. old and laying fine, no problems there. And there has been no change in their activity or diet.
Should I be as worried about this as I am? I haven't found any threads that pose these questions. Are they like people, different sizes??
I honestly don't think so...thank you for any words of wisdom.

Some pics would be helpful. My RIR's are a bit scrawny looking, but it seems that all of my strong egg layers are a little scrawny because unlike meat birds their energies are focused on laying eggs. I think as long as you are getting the same amount of eggs your are probably fine... JMHO. However, maybe if you post pics we could be of more help.
My Rhode Island Reds are lean, also. Like yours, no protruding breastbone, just thinner than the other birds. I have wormed my flock as I found some roundworms in the coop, and despite the absence of worms, and being fed well, they are still lean. I hope more people comment. Maybe this is just how it is.
Thank you so much for your replies chikadeedoodah and Dora'smom. I'm glad to hear RIRs are lean and they ARE producing eggs daily. I don't have any pics, and at the moment I'm not home. I will try tomorrow. But, they really don't LOOK thin they just feel considerably lighter than the other two.

Thanks again and I'll post pics tomorrow!

Happy Friday everyone!!!
I have 3 rhode island reds, the dominant bird and my is she that, is the heaviest, she eats first and leads the flock around the garden, she is the first to investigate new areas and the one with the least manners when it comes to trying my new flowers!

the other two are noticibly lighter in weight. I have a feeder that i made out of a 5 gal old mud bucket with a 4 inch PVC pipe to store the feed an release as they eat more, this way there are multiple holes for them all to eat at the same time, not fight over space and get equal amounts of food!

The Mille Fleur Bantam however is the poor red headed step child of the flock, she gets whatever is left after the other three have had their fill, sometimes i let her out on her own and turn over a couple of rocks so she can get some bugs and worms before the 3 ugly sisters (although they are not ugly at all!) come and chase her off!
thank you mboreham1, I think that's the situation! The feeder I'm using is a large metal one so there is plenty of room for all four, and I have seen all of them eating at the same time. But, I think your right about the dominant bird and I know by observation what you mean by leading the flock and investigaing, along with bad manners! She is the only one that pecks HARD when I feed them by hand. The others are very gentle. It's funny how they all have their own personalities, I just can't get over that (I'm a new chicken owner, if you hadn't noticed)

Thanks again everyone, I feel better about it now!

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