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30/01/2013 at 21:33

Can anyone tell me why my chicken has a complete bald bottom! its a patch around 2" diameter?

30/01/2013 at 21:38

Moulting-a similar thing happened to one of mine12 months ago-guess not laying either?

Other than that is she OK?

30/01/2013 at 21:46

Hi Sotongeoff, I noticed it yesterday for the first time, I have 4 hens in total and got 4 eggs Monday, 2 yesterday and 3 today which is quite normal at the moment.If she is laying it would be usual to get 4 tomorrow. Because there are 4 of them, I'm never sure which has laid and which hasn't. She seems OK other than the bald patch.

I did read on another site that she could be 'eggbound' which could be fatal!

30/01/2013 at 22:00

I think egg bound is a slight myth that we attribute to anything that goes wrong

Are the others pecking her-you can get a spray to stop that if they are- they always detect a weakness.

You should notice a lot of feathers lying about if she is moulting-are there?

30/01/2013 at 22:05

When I cleaned them on Sunday I didn't notice any feathers, I haven't noticed any pecking either. I will keep an eye on them tomorrow and come back to you.               Thank you

30/01/2013 at 22:06

Please do

31/01/2013 at 07:30

If you've checked that she doesn't have any mites, then she's probably moulting (some of them do it in patches).  I'd up the protein-level in her feed as she'll need it to grow new feathers.  The others will probably follow suit.  Their egg production is likely to drop off as they moult and grow new feathers, but when they've got their new plumage and the day length really lengthens and the weather gets warmer the egg laying rate will pick up again.

If she does have mites then a lot of poultry keepers use Frontline (puppy/kitten strength) on the back of the next only and treat all hens at the same time - I must add that as I understand it, it is not licensed for use on chickens in the UK at the present time and you may prefer to seek advice from a vet who specialises in poultry.  Advice on withdrawing eggs when treating with Frontline is ambiguous - you may like to look on some poultry fora  - there's info here

When I kept poultry I found it helped to keep a large shallow container of dry sand in the henhouse during the winter, as the hens' usual dustbaths were too wet to use because of the weather.  The dustbath and preening helps the chickens rid themselves of mites etc.

If the hens do have mites then you also need to treat a wooden henhouse thoroughly with a proprietory treatment to get rid of the infestation. 

31/01/2013 at 09:20

Hi Dovefromabove,

I'm fairly new to this and have not had to do anything so far apart from the general looking after them. I'll of had them a year in April. The hen house was new so its not been treated as yet, was planning on doing it as soon as the weather picks up. I've not treated them for mites yet either although I do add mite powder on every clean. Will I be able to see them clearly?

How do I up the protein level? They have laying pellets and scraps from the kitchen, ie; salad, veg, bread and maybe a little cooked pasta from time to time. I'll add the tray of sand as its a bit of a mud bath in there at the moment!

31/01/2013 at 09:25


 am on the kindle so can't go into to much detail as the keyboard is tiny

If it is mites they feed on blood- look under the perches for red stains


31/01/2013 at 09:33

To up the protein level increase the layers pellets and cut down on the other stuff for a while.    Layers pellets are designed as complete nutrition, so if they fill up on pasta and bread they're cutting down on their protein.  Fine if they're in full health and the weather's warm, but in the wet and cold winter weather they're probably not getting much protein from worms and bugs in the soil (I presume they're free range, or at least with access to worms and bugs )

It's a while since I've kept poultry (used to have a laying flock of pure breeds (Marans, Rhode Island Reds and Welsummers) along with a load of cross-bred bantams which I used to hatch the pure-bred eggs (I had a different type of cockerel each year, one year Maran, the next Welsummer and so on).   So anyway, I'm a bit out of touch with which wormng and mite treatments are allowed nowadays so if I were you I'd locate a vet who is knowledgeable about laying hens (not all are!) and check out some websites this is another good one.

I love chickens - enjoy yours 

31/01/2013 at 09:39

Thank you so much, great advice! I love my girlies too and yes, they are free range.

31/01/2013 at 09:46

Am on the Pc-now

It is unlikely to be mites in the winter-more likely just a moult

They are like kids feed them sweets they prefer the sweets-so cut out the extras for a bit and just feed them pellets-you should see an improvement

Before you go to the vet-and this is the unpleasnt bit-bear in mind the cost- a course ot treatment does not come cheap

I have used frontline in the past-go on-line to but it is about 50%cheaper than at vets or stores

31/01/2013 at 10:03
I buy frontline by another name in our local farmers store, it's the same but not the brand name.
When chickens are in moult it's good to add some olive oil to the grain.
31/01/2013 at 10:16

Its a bit odd the way they moult, its literally a perfect circle right under her tail....if they they have a tail? Will check for blood and feathers.

31/01/2013 at 10:29

It is not usually like that -usually thet just go all scruffy-but the bald patch is the same spot as one of mine last year-but then the others started pecking it then she started pecking it-they are sweet but pretty thick and nasty at times -that is where the purple spray came in

The mites are tiny brown dots that go red when they have feasted-hard to spot individually-I use a poultry house spray every few months seems to work-prevention being better than cure

31/01/2013 at 12:31

Had a quick look round perch, can't see any blood and no obvious feathers lying around so I'm off to Wynestay to get me some purple spray and some poultry house my 4 eggs today so shes not egg bound!

31/01/2013 at 12:43

I have four hens and a cock.They're coming up to a year now.The amount of eggs i get a day has differed in the winter but always 4 a day in the summer.I have noticed a few feathers around their house ,however i was told not to worry as in the winter they can moult.However i would of thought this was more likely to happen during the summer months.One of my hens'Daisy'seems to very popular with'Burdock'The Cock!Unfortunately she has lost a few feathers where he has pecked at her etc!!!  Iam wondrering if i should separate her from him for a bit? Somone suggested in knitting a coat  to cover her back where its gong bold!I spray the house with red mite spray every couple of months so i think they are clean.I try not to over worry about them .You can get over obsessed with checking poop ,bold spots etc.Lets face it we all ' over spoil our chickens'

31/01/2013 at 13:25

Hi jacqui

Dont do the coat thing-all the stuff I have read is that it just becomes a mite breeding heaven

Not sure that having a cock in with them is a good idea-unless you want to breed?

31/01/2013 at 14:14

Now you have said 'perfect ring' do chickens get ring worm Geoff?

If so that is a fungal infection, hard to get rid of.

They get bald backs if a cock is running with them, but he will keep them together.

You shouldn't sell eggs if you have a cockerel

31/01/2013 at 19:00
Lyn wrote (see)

You shouldn't sell eggs if you have a cockerel

I'm sorry, I don't want to appear rude  but that's complete rubbish 

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