Moulting or Molting, To-mat-oe or To-ma-toe

Moulting Manuella

Hi keepers, it’s that time of year again in New Zealand, the days are getting shorter and the air is growing cooler.  This is the trigger for the girls to start their moulting, the shedding of their feathers.  It looks worse than it is, to the unfamiliar, the hens will just start to drop feathers everywhere, the run can resemble the scene of a large pillow fight, they just get everywhere, the chickens themselves do look as if they have been in a fight,  or gone to a really bad hairdresser.

There’s not alot to done for them during this time, some say to add some nutrients to their water.  The down side to all of this is, they stop laying, all of their energy goes into growing new feathers, on the positve side, I have collected alot of the bigger tail feathers over the years and I am attempting some kind of feather art project.

So if you’re experiencing this for the first time, don’t worry,  it’s normal chicken behaviour.

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2 Responses

  1. thank your for this Rob,
    I have a mother hen who is moulting and she has become really sluggish and I did not know wether this was normal or not.
    Besides that, I think she is now almost blind, certainly in one eye.
    Not quite sure about here age, I got her last year Feb with her 4 wee girls. I think she might be 3y old now. How long do chickens live?
    I absolutely adore my chickens never thought I would, but I do. The 2 dogs and 2 cats get on well with them too. Thanks again, I will keep following you… regards, Johanna (Turangi)

    • Hi Johanna, glad to be of help, I not exactly sure how long chickens live for, most of mine have departed at about 4yrs old, they are usually passed their prime laying years after 2, so it makes sense thats half way through their lives. Happy keeping.

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