vent pecking!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickengirl1193, Oct 18, 2013.

  1. chickengirl1193

    chickengirl1193 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    my delawares are pecking at my barred Plymouth rocks vent, I checked and it's not red or bleeding so I have no idea why they are pecking at it :/ they are foraging around in their run right now which is 40x40 for only 4 hens. does anyone know why they would be pecking at her?
     
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Two things come to mind; they are pecking at lice or mites, or they are feather pickers and possibly eating the feathers. You'll have to observe them eating feathers to confirm it. Look very closely at Plymouth Rock's vent area for lice/mites. Check feather shafts for eggs. Lice are whittish/off white in color and are fast movers. Mites look like pepper, can be red or black and are slow movers IF they move at all. They are too busy sucking blood.
     
  3. chickengirl1193

    chickengirl1193 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay thanks! I'll watch them and see if I notice one feather eating or lice or mites. would they eat feathers that are in the coop on the floor?
     
  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Most likely if they are protein deficient.
     
  5. chickengirl1193

    chickengirl1193 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay. I'm feeding them a 16% protein feed but they are also foraging and I have seen them get worms and other bugs. also i checked and I dont think I saw any mites, around her vent there was something that looked a little like dander but I didn't see it anywhere else, could that have been mites?
     
  6. chickengirl1193

    chickengirl1193 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    my Plymouth rock and my RIR were dust bathing and the Delaware came up to them and started pecking at them and scratching the ground around them like she wanted to dust bathe right on top of them, but now I see her pulling feathers out... she's the only one doing it. should i cull her or is there possibly another cause?
     
  7. chickengirl1193

    chickengirl1193 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    other than that they seem very healthy and look good, they forage all day and i give them kitchen scraps as well as sprouts that i grow for them and they have a 16% layer feed, only one chicken is doing the feather picking and eating, the others all are getting along just fine. I dont think it is boredom either because they forage in a 40'x40' area that still has grass in it. im new at this so any input would be great thanks!
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    You might try increasing their protein to 20%, such as using Flock Raiser feed, or throwing a bit of 24-26% gamebird feed on the ground. With feather picking, it can be due to lack of protein, boredom, or not enough room. Some chickens will do this occasionally no matter what. Also it sometimes can be a habit. Putting some interesting things to climb on and explore might help.
     
  9. chickengirl1193

    chickengirl1193 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    okay, ill try increasing their protein first. its only one bird and she only seems to do it while the others are dust bathing.
     

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