When do chickens moult?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by bluegiantsc, Aug 14, 2012.

  1. bluegiantsc

    bluegiantsc Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My chickens are a little over 14 months old, when should I expect them to moult?
     
  2. terryg

    terryg Chillin' With My Peeps

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  3. bluegiantsc

    bluegiantsc Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! Do roosters molt too? Hes white and shes black, I've noticed a lot of white feathers in the run. But I just started cooping them up, they went from being completely free range to in a coop most of the time. I started noticing his feathers more when I put them up. Do chickens get stressed out and pull their feathers out like other birds species? There aren't as many feathers as there were when I first put them up.
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Oh yes! Roosters molt too. Big time. I think sometimes it damages their egos when they have a hard molt and look really frowzy. My two-year old Brahma roo Penrod has been in molt for six weeks now, but he's managing to do it without detracting from his stunning good looks.
     
  5. laura625

    laura625 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you terry great article.
    But i have a question.
    Chickens can be hatchex year round. So, they arent all reaching 18mos at molting season.
    I'm not trying to be picky,im just trying to figure out how to manage my flock and am easily confused:/
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Not all chickens follow the general rule of fall molt. They can molt at any time for lots of reasons. If they're deprived of adequate food, they will molt. If they're frightened, it can trigger a molt. Some youngsters go through a partial "juvenile" molt before they're a year old. Sometimes a chicken can start molt and not finish it, remaining in a half bald state for a year or longer.

    So, generally, you can expect to see a whole lot of feathers in the coop and run come fall and early winter. But any chicken can defy this and decide to molt in mid-summer, mid-winter, or molt but you can hardly tell because they lose and replace feathers so discretely.

    Usually, you can expect your hens to molt one year from when they first begin to lay. Okay?
     
  7. Cindy in PA

    Cindy in PA Overrun With Chickens

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    Chickens molt a year or more after they start laying. They do not all molt in the fall. The longer they lay before molting, the better the layer.
     
  8. laura625

    laura625 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Got it. Thanks :D
     

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