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#103336 - 04/11/12 12:48 PM Feather Picking
orrinnh Offline

Registered: 03/20/11
Posts: 15
Loc: New Hampshire
I have 20 Buff Chanteclers that are 8 weeks old. The last couple of days I have noticed a few feathers scattered around the coop. Is this a sign of feather picking? If so I would appreciate any ideas to help nip it in the bud. Thanks!

#103354 - 04/12/12 11:50 AM Re: Feather Picking [Re: orrinnh]
Wieslaw Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3824
Loc: Denmark
Do you mean feather pecking/eating? I think you should be more worried if the chicks are getting more and more naked but there are no feathers around the coop. Growing chicks molt their feathers now and then.

#103365 - 04/13/12 10:53 PM Re: Feather Picking [Re: Wieslaw]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1283
Loc: Canada
Yes, Wieslaw said it correctly. If you have balding birds and lots of feathers on the ground, that means the feathers are falling out naturally.

If you have balding birds and no feathers on the ground, then you might have a picking problem and 'nipping it in the bud' is more difficult than you might think! Lots has been posted about this problem and some people have success with the Stop Pick products and other have more success with chopping the heads off the worst pickers.

Also, birds do peck at each other, but the odd peck does not equal a picking problem. If you find bloody and injured birds, you have a problem. Picking is a situation about degrees. A mild amount is normal poultry interaction, a large amount is an out-of-hand problem. But if you have feathers drifting around the floor and hen yard, that is a good sign.

#103893 - 05/27/12 11:44 PM Re: Feather Picking [Re: Uno]
Foehn Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 1974
Loc: New Zealand
Luckily I have not had this problem and I think it is more stressful for bigger groups of young chicks than I rear. I did buy in some pullets last year that had been "picked". One now has a crooked tail, but it is slowly looking better. I hope when she moults for the first time, that the tail will correct itself.


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