Two week old Barred Plymouth Rock chick plucking own feathers

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by monaname, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. monaname

    monaname Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 20, 2011
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    Hi All,

    I'm new to the backyard chicken world and I'm raising my first chicks. I got seven Barred Plymouth Rocks. They seem to be very healthy and happy except today I noticed that one of them has started to pluck his/her own feathers out. I've been watching them closely this evening and it looks like the other chicks are not bothering him/her so it does seem to be self inflicted. I've done some reading and the brooder might be getting too small for all seven chicks. My husband is out in the garage right now, making a 2nd brooder to attach to the side of the current brooder. Hopefully that will create enough space until we get the coop built in the next couple of weeks.

    My question is this....If the addition of space does not help with the plucking and I separate this chick from all the others, will that help or hurt? I don't want the other chicks to start pecking at him/her and I'm concerned about what they'll do if I keep him/her away for too long. Any suggestions?

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's generally not a good idea to remove the one unless there is an injury as it will place the chick on the bottom of the pecking order when you return it. You might try getting some Rooster Booster no pick stuff from the feed store to put on the areas where the chick is plucking. They don't like the taste or texture. It does stain, however, so keep it off of your clothes.

    Edited to say [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
  3. monaname

    monaname Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow, thanks! I'll look for that tomorrow at my local farmer's exchange. :-D
     
  4. Wildflower_VA

    Wildflower_VA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Make sure that this chick is getting enough to eat. Feather picking can be a sign of protein deficiency, so if he is the bottom chick and not getting his chance at the feed, he might need a boost. You could try giving them all some chopped boiled egg and make sure this chick gets as much as he wants.
     
  5. monaname

    monaname Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't have grit for them yet. If I give them chopped boiled egg without grit, is that a problem?
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011
  6. monaname

    monaname Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just talked to the folks at the exchange and they suggested I put a dab of Vaseline on the bald spots first......sound advice?
     
  7. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Sure. That's probably a good idea to try first...and it's cheaper. The chick will probably not like the texture.
     
  8. Wildflower_VA

    Wildflower_VA Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:No problem giving cooked eggs without grit. They only need grit to grind up and digest things like grass, greens, veggies and larger seeds.
     
  9. monaname

    monaname Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for all the feedback. Yesterday went well. The chick is still plucking a little, but it doesn't seem to be getting any worse. I held off on the Vaseline for now and instead of the egg, I gave them two small "crawler" worms. They seemed to really like them. Very funny to watch them pick up the worm and run around with it while all the others follow. I had to go back to the office today, so I can't monitor all the chicks during the day. Fingers crossed that all is peaceful while I'm gone.
     

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