What do my chickens feathers mean??

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Kombertini, Dec 27, 2015.

  1. Kombertini

    Kombertini Out Of The Brooder

    May 20, 2015

    A couple of them are like this. Is this due to the rooster?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    Mar 9, 2014
    My Coop
    While this is a common pattern for "rooster damage" it does not necessarily mean it is the cause of the issue being noticed in your birds. Are the hens in question "favorites" of the rooster in regards to who he mates the most? Have you checked them (and the coop) for signs of external parasites? Is your rooster a young, randy bird or an older, more gentlemanly boy?
  3. Kombertini

    Kombertini Out Of The Brooder

    May 20, 2015
    Idk if they are his favorites exactly but he's always on top of the ladies ever time I turn around. He's a young guy too. Their skin looks fine and not irritated where the feathers appear disheveled. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  4. Free Feather

    Free Feather Chillin' With My Peeps

    Rooster treading is what is causing the disheveling. It happens to some hens no matter what the rooster to hen ratio is.
  5. eleaserek

    eleaserek Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2015
    Billings, MT
    Most likely it's from your rooster. As another poster said, rule out parasites. Then if your rooster doesn't cool off with a little more age, you can invest in some saddles for the hens that get real sad looking feathers.
  6. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    While it does appear to be rooster damage, I've seen very similar looking feather damage from hens picking and biting at the back feathers of a lower ranking hen. It's a version of feather picking where the feathers are "chewed" or bitten instead of plucked out.

    It's more than likely the reason for the damaged feathers you've shown us is due to rooster mating, but to be certain, you need to observe your flock over an hour or two. It does no good to try to advise when we really aren't certain what's taking place. You need to see with your own eyes how the damage is occurring, come back and report what you've seen, and then we can try to advise you.
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    ......a couple times a day for a week or more.

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