Young chickens missing feathers in random places.

Chasethehunter

Hatching
Aug 17, 2016
4
0
9
Hello, I was hoping to get some advice from some of you chicken experts out there! i've got a mixture of young chickens and hens that have just come into laying. They all free range and they are all in the same large coop and run now, however, the younger ones are missing feathers mostly in their neck, tummy, Bum, and back areas. Prior to combining all the chickens together, I was already noticing the littler ones starting to look like they were missing feathers just as soon as they're real feathers came in. When they were big enough to let loose with the bigger chickens, the problem continued but none of my bigger chickens have any bald spots like these young ones. I had thought that perhaps the enclosure was becoming too small for the younger ones and that maybe they were picking on each other causing the balding look and that once they had more room to run around their feathers would grow back- but that is not the case. I am including some pictures of what it looks like. If anyone knows what this could be I would greatly appreciate it!
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drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Aug 26, 2009
140,321
286,987
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Out to pasture
Do you have any roosters? The damage on their backs looks like rooster damage from breeding them too much. If no rooster, your older hens are doing it.

You may need to start all over again, introducing the young birds to the established flock. Older birds tend to bully and feather peck and sometimes gang up and even kill other birds. They will also try to prevent young birds from getting to the water and food dishes. So you may need to set out more bowls in other areas, so the bullies can't guard them all.

I suggest you try the "Look but don't touch integration method." Put that in the search and it should come up.
 

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Aug 26, 2009
140,321
286,987
2,097
Out to pasture
PS enlarged the photo, that poor bird has really been plucked. You can get "hen aprons," for the ones that are being picked clean, to give their feathers a chance to regrow. Also you can put Blu-kote on their bald areas, so they won't appear sore or reddened. Chickens can go insane when they see blood or even the color red- and will pluck and attack to the point of cannibalism. Wild birds are much the same.

If you are able to observe them sight unseen, you will find who the offenders are. Each bully need a few days in solitary (dog crates or pens). When they return to the flock, they may be lower on the pecking order.

You also can get "pinless peepers," to put on the meanies. It prevents the bird from seeing straight ahead, which throws it's aim off,,and probably annoys them enough that they forget about attacking the youngsters. Put "pinless peepers," in the search box and it will come up, so you can read about them.

I hope something here, will help you
 

Chasethehunter

Hatching
Aug 17, 2016
4
0
9
thank you so much for replying! I really appreciate it. I wasn't sure how to add multiple pictures so I will post a few more and if you could tell me if you still think it's from being picked on would be great!
400
 

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