What is wrong...

Brock Homestead

In the Brooder
Jul 28, 2017
4
7
16
My husband takes care of our flock, as I am gone during the day. However, after the time change, I looked in the run and noticed that something is not quite right with two of our chickens.

The Barred Rock head has lost feathers, and the Easter Egger has something strange on her neck. Can anyone help to identify the issue? We use deep litter in the coop and will clean it out within the next few weeks. We are new to chickens (first year), so all help is appreciated.

Thanks!
 

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Eggcessive

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Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
61,065
53,326
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southern Ohio
Looks like they have had feathers picked out by the other chickens. Roosters may peck the feathers out on the hens head when he mates her. Just to make sure they don’t have lice or mites, I would inspect the skin for tiny bugs or white clumps of lice eggs at the base of feathers. Feather picking can be a sign of too little protein in the diet, over crowding, and boredom from not getting out to free range.
 

Brock Homestead

In the Brooder
Jul 28, 2017
4
7
16
Looks like they have had feathers picked out by the other chickens. Roosters may peck the feathers out on the hens head when he mates her. Just to make sure they don’t have lice or mites, I would inspect the skin for tiny bugs or white clumps of lice eggs at the base of feathers. Feather picking can be a sign of too little protein in the diet, over crowding, and boredom from not getting out to free range.

Thank you so much for your quick response! We are going out to check for lice/mites, now!! I will let you know what we find!! The other thought is boredom. They aren't able to free-range, any thoughts as to other ways to improve the issue?
 

Eggcessive

Addict
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
61,065
53,326
1,322
southern Ohio
A rule of thumb is that every grown chicken needs 4 square feet of room, and you may need to increase the size of your chicken run if they need more room. Just letting them out a few hours in the late afternoon or evening before roost time can help them keep active and get away from the others. Some use swings or things to climb on inside, while some hang cabbages to peck at.
 

Brock Homestead

In the Brooder
Jul 28, 2017
4
7
16
A rule of thumb is that every grown chicken needs 4 square feet of room, and you may need to increase the size of your chicken run if they need more room. Just letting them out a few hours in the late afternoon or evening before roost time can help them keep active and get away from the others. Some use swings or things to climb on inside, while some hang cabbages to peck at.

Thank you! I don't see any mites/lice, but will continue to check on it. We have thought about letting them out 1-2 at a time into the attached garden while we are out there. The swings, etc. are a good idea and I hadn't thought of that.
Thanks!
 

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