My ‘Whitey’ is bald!

Duckfarmerpa1

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Hi there. We have a white chicken, we call her Whitey..we believe she is a leghorn. She has been healthy, other than about two months afpgo she had a yucky bumm, and we needed to trim her bumm feathers. Other than than, no issues. She was given to us in August...she seems to rank high in the pecking order because she can fly, and the first batch of chickens we got from the bad farmer had their wings clipped. We don’t do that to our pullets. Anyways..she seems very social, and is a good layer. Yesterday I was checking out my birds..giving them attention and cuddles. Whitey had bad bare skin under her wings, by her bottom, and under her belly. These areas are not from a delayed molt, or feather picking from other birds...they couldn’t pick her belly? I checked her over for mites, lice..nothing.. checked many of my girls for the same..nothing. I’ve had no issues with that...so far. She is still laying, at least she is always hanging out in the nest box, so I think that’s what she’s doing. Hard to keep track, since I have thirty five hens. I suppose I could put lipstick on her vent...yuck... but..what to do in the meantime? Why is she doing such a thing?? Should I put salve on it? My hubby loves bag balm...would that help, it’s frigid here. Any advice would be very useful...even if we are just throwing out ideas...sometimes thats how the bast ideas come!! Thanks everyone!!
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Sheepshape

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Strange....those feathers look as though they have been broken off. Could she be doing that herself or is another of the chickens breaking them?
Doesn't look like the typical area for a rooster to damage.
To be honest I don't really have any sensible idea apart from the feathers being broken off.
 

Beekissed

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She's not a leghorn, she's a White Rock....got a pic of her just standing broadside? That messy bum needs to be cleaned off so you can see what lies beneath....that doesn't look like a normal messy butt from the beginning of a laying cycle.

If she's spending a lot of time in the nest boxes, it could be she's broody, which could mean she plucked her own feathers off in various places....check to see if she's sleeping in the boxes at night. If you check her feathers and they look bitten off, it could be mice chewing her feathers if she's roosting in the nest boxes....it happens most in the winter months when food is scarce. Feathers are good protein.

If you want to check to see if she's currently laying, you can glove up and insert the tip of your finger into her vent late one night....you should be able to palpate the next day's egg in there....that is, if she's laying daily....if not, you may have to do this the next night as well. This will not hurt her nor harm her in any way. If you have trouble getting your finger tip into the vent, she's definitely not in lay....laying hens have a loose, moist vent but some older hens will just have a loose vent from years of laying, so the vent check for laying can be deceptive....best to actually FEEL the egg.

You'll want to check the skin around her vent late at night when lice and mites are more active....more of an indication if she's got external parasites. There are chewing lice that can affect plumage like that also.
 

Duckfarmerpa1

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Ok...so, why would they be picking just her..but, I did notice that the necks of some have missing feathers...we thought it was the rooster, Spike. So, you said MICE might be eating her feathers? We do keep the feed in the coop at night...I can definitely check the coop. So, if it’s external parasites..that’s a HUGE issue.....they are laying awesome! Hoe do I care for the parasi, other than cleaning nest boxes, I know I spray...but I forget what...do I spray them too? Ugh?? Oh no!! Can I do the lipstick trick on her vent, instead of my finger? I did clean up her bumm...she was sooo good for it..but I didn’t use water...didn’t want to get her wet...just trimmed the gunk...
 

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Ok...so, why would they be picking just her..but, I did notice that the necks of some have missing feathers...we thought it was the rooster, Spike. So, you said MICE might be eating her feathers? We do keep the feed in the coop at night...I can definitely check the coop. So, if it’s external parasites..that’s a HUGE issue.....they are laying awesome! Hoe do I care for the parasi, other than cleaning nest boxes, I know I spray...but I forget what...do I spray them too? Ugh?? Oh no!! Can I do the lipstick trick on her vent, instead of my finger? I did clean up her bumm...she was sooo good for it..but I didn’t use water...didn’t want to get her wet...just trimmed the gunk...
Ok...so I put my finger up her vent...I didn’t feel anything...it felt open..nice big cavity.....she was also not in the nest box. I will keep doing this...I am going to TS tomorrow morning..I would love to hear back before to know what spray to get to get rid of the parasites??
 

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I just googled lice and mites on chickens..I dont see any black or brown marks around her skin..I didn’t check the others yet...I will in the morning. If I see this..it reccom lime..them boil water...I can’t pour boiling water in the nest boxes or coop in the fridgd weather! What do I do?? I’ve read that the DE isn’t really that effective against these parasites...I want to knock these things out!!
 

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I just googled lice and mites on chickens..I dont see any black or brown marks around her skin..I didn’t check the others yet...I will in the morning. If I see this..it reccom lime..them boil water...I can’t pour boiling water in the nest boxes or coop in the fridgd weather! What do I do?? I’ve read that the DE isn’t really that effective against these parasites...I want to knock these things out!!
Simmer down, Kemosabe! :gig Don't jump until you've been stung. You don't know it's parasites, so don't start bombing the place just yet. :D Go up at night and take your birds off the roosts one by one and examine their skin under a bright light, one by one....if you've not been doing this with your flock care, it's time to start this. Bi-annual skin checks are an important part of preventative~and curative~flock care. Look at the skin around the vent, under the wings, and anywhere else the skin is thinner....if you have mites or lice you'll most often find them in those places.

If you don't care about staying all natural, you can get yourself some Permethrin powder/dust(can be found at any garden center) and keep that on hand for prevention and also treatment. If you do care about a more natural approach, sulfur dust from the same source can get you where you want to be. I don't bother with DE...tiny shards of glass like material is nothing I'd want my poultry to be breathing.

Also, get yourself some castor oil(can find it at any pharmacy but Walmart has the best quantity for the price) and keep that on hand as well.

If you have some that show bugs, turn them on their backs and dust them gently with the sulfur powder~just put some in your palm, slide it under the feathers and rub it under the feathers in all the areas you can, as well as you can....try to avoid their eyes and keep your motions low and slow as to not raise too much dust in the air.

While you have them on hand, rub a thick coat of castor oil into the scales of the legs and feet, massaging it upwards under the edges of the scales. You can also use CO to prevent frost bite on combs or to treat combs and wattles already frost bit...it works by bringing blood to the surface of the comb, speeding healing and restoration of the damaged tissue. It works on scale mites by smothering them and it's also an insecticide, while helping the regrowth of healthy scales....any damaged scales will slough off as the new scales come in.

Remove nest box material and sprinkle some dust in the boxes and replace the nesting material with fresh....no need to wash down or spray anything. During the day you can do the same thing to your roosts....just rub handfuls of powder/dust on the surface of the roosts.

If you don't have a place for them to dust in the winter months, you may want to establish a place...the best material to use for dusting is just plain ol' clay dust. I wouldn't mix DE in there at all.

If she's nice and loose, it's likely she's laying, so I wouldn't be putting any lipstick on her lips just yet...if the rooster is mating her, she's currently laying, so that's another way of identifying if she's a layer. That's easier with white chickens in the winter months, as they always have a dirty back. :D

I do these checks and dusting(if necessary...usually I can get by just dusting the roosts and nest boxes) in the spring and at the end of fall. It's a good routine to get into and will save you from having to worry. I also cull old birds that no longer lay a regular cycle each spring or any that have persistent external parasites....these are your birds more likely to attract disease and parasites. Eliminating these from the flock can keep you from having issues to begin with, especially the yearly cull of nonlayers.

If they are laying well, you may not be dealing with parasites at all, so don't panic....just do your skin checks, dust your nest boxes and roosts if you don't find any chickens needing dusted or oiled. Then I'd remove feed from the coop at night...you don't want mice in your coop if you can help it. They attract snakes, which will clean you OUT on eggs and chicks. Just two black snakes can ruin your hatching season but good.

No worries, just slow down and do one thing at a time and you'll get there.
 

Duckfarmerpa1

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Simmer down, Kemosabe! :gig Don't jump until you've been stung. You don't know it's parasites, so don't start bombing the place just yet. :D Go up at night and take your birds off the roosts one by one and examine their skin under a bright light, one by one....if you've not been doing this with your flock care, it's time to start this. Bi-annual skin checks are an important part of preventative~and curative~flock care. Look at the skin around the vent, under the wings, and anywhere else the skin is thinner....if you have mites or lice you'll most often find them in those places.

If you don't care about staying all natural, you can get yourself some Permethrin powder/dust(can be found at any garden center) and keep that on hand for prevention and also treatment. If you do care about a more natural approach, sulfur dust from the same source can get you where you want to be. I don't bother with DE...tiny shards of glass like material is nothing I'd want my poultry to be breathing.

Also, get yourself some castor oil(can find it at any pharmacy but Walmart has the best quantity for the price) and keep that on hand as well.

If you have some that show bugs, turn them on their backs and dust them gently with the sulfur powder~just put some in your palm, slide it under the feathers and rub it under the feathers in all the areas you can, as well as you can....try to avoid their eyes and keep your motions low and slow as to not raise too much dust in the air.

While you have them on hand, rub a thick coat of castor oil into the scales of the legs and feet, massaging it upwards under the edges of the scales. You can also use CO to prevent frost bite on combs or to treat combs and wattles already frost bit...it works by bringing blood to the surface of the comb, speeding healing and restoration of the damaged tissue. It works on scale mites by smothering them and it's also an insecticide, while helping the regrowth of healthy scales....any damaged scales will slough off as the new scales come in.

Remove nest box material and sprinkle some dust in the boxes and replace the nesting material with fresh....no need to wash down or spray anything. During the day you can do the same thing to your roosts....just rub handfuls of powder/dust on the surface of the roosts.

If you don't have a place for them to dust in the winter months, you may want to establish a place...the best material to use for dusting is just plain ol' clay dust. I wouldn't mix DE in there at all.

If she's nice and loose, it's likely she's laying, so I wouldn't be putting any lipstick on her lips just yet...if the rooster is mating her, she's currently laying, so that's another way of identifying if she's a layer. That's easier with white chickens in the winter months, as they always have a dirty back. :D

I do these checks and dusting(if necessary...usually I can get by just dusting the roosts and nest boxes) in the spring and at the end of fall. It's a good routine to get into and will save you from having to worry. I also cull old birds that no longer lay a regular cycle each spring or any that have persistent external parasites....these are your birds more likely to attract disease and parasites. Eliminating these from the flock can keep you from having issues to begin with, especially the yearly cull of nonlayers.

If they are laying well, you may not be dealing with parasites at all, so don't panic....just do your skin checks, dust your nest boxes and roosts if you don't find any chickens needing dusted or oiled. Then I'd remove feed from the coop at night...you don't want mice in your coop if you can help it. They attract snakes, which will clean you OUT on eggs and chicks. Just two black snakes can ruin your hatching season but good.

No worries, just slow down and do one thing at a time and you'll get there.
:lol: yes...I do tend to overreact...thanksfor telling me to hold my horses. So, I didn’t see any parasi on her...she looked quite bare...could you see anything? There are no white feathers anywhere in the coop, unless I’ve missed them in the muddy mess it’s been lately before the renovation. Why would they be bitten off..she would do that do herself? to itch herself it’s parasites? Ouch! I will keep checking her vent. I will remove the feed. I will do the bird checks tomorrow night...but I’m going to buy everything you mentioned tomorrow so, I have it all on stock. Is there some sort of spray? I kept being tempted to buy a spray for chickens picking at eavjother and having sores. My rooster had a bare neck and bumm. The hens picked at him constantly. We couldnever figure out why they let him....do you think they were eating parasites?? Why wouldn’t they all have them? I’m so confused..why just one and not the whole flock..why a bald white skined-bird, with no sign of black dots? Ok...there I go again...getting OCD...
 

Duckfarmerpa1

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Simmer down, Kemosabe! :gig Don't jump until you've been stung. You don't know it's parasites, so don't start bombing the place just yet. :D Go up at night and take your birds off the roosts one by one and examine their skin under a bright light, one by one....if you've not been doing this with your flock care, it's time to start this. Bi-annual skin checks are an important part of preventative~and curative~flock care. Look at the skin around the vent, under the wings, and anywhere else the skin is thinner....if you have mites or lice you'll most often find them in those places.

If you don't care about staying all natural, you can get yourself some Permethrin powder/dust(can be found at any garden center) and keep that on hand for prevention and also treatment. If you do care about a more natural approach, sulfur dust from the same source can get you where you want to be. I don't bother with DE...tiny shards of glass like material is nothing I'd want my poultry to be breathing.

Also, get yourself some castor oil(can find it at any pharmacy but Walmart has the best quantity for the price) and keep that on hand as well.

If you have some that show bugs, turn them on their backs and dust them gently with the sulfur powder~just put some in your palm, slide it under the feathers and rub it under the feathers in all the areas you can, as well as you can....try to avoid their eyes and keep your motions low and slow as to not raise too much dust in the air.

While you have them on hand, rub a thick coat of castor oil into the scales of the legs and feet, massaging it upwards under the edges of the scales. You can also use CO to prevent frost bite on combs or to treat combs and wattles already frost bit...it works by bringing blood to the surface of the comb, speeding healing and restoration of the damaged tissue. It works on scale mites by smothering them and it's also an insecticide, while helping the regrowth of healthy scales....any damaged scales will slough off as the new scales come in.

Remove nest box material and sprinkle some dust in the boxes and replace the nesting material with fresh....no need to wash down or spray anything. During the day you can do the same thing to your roosts....just rub handfuls of powder/dust on the surface of the roosts.

If you don't have a place for them to dust in the winter months, you may want to establish a place...the best material to use for dusting is just plain ol' clay dust. I wouldn't mix DE in there at all.

If she's nice and loose, it's likely she's laying, so I wouldn't be putting any lipstick on her lips just yet...if the rooster is mating her, she's currently laying, so that's another way of identifying if she's a layer. That's easier with white chickens in the winter months, as they always have a dirty back. :D

I do these checks and dusting(if necessary...usually I can get by just dusting the roosts and nest boxes) in the spring and at the end of fall. It's a good routine to get into and will save you from having to worry. I also cull old birds that no longer lay a regular cycle each spring or any that have persistent external parasites....these are your birds more likely to attract disease and parasites. Eliminating these from the flock can keep you from having issues to begin with, especially the yearly cull of nonlayers.

If they are laying well, you may not be dealing with parasites at all, so don't panic....just do your skin checks, dust your nest boxes and roosts if you don't find any chickens needing dusted or oiled. Then I'd remove feed from the coop at night...you don't want mice in your coop if you can help it. They attract snakes, which will clean you OUT on eggs and chicks. Just two black snakes can ruin your hatching season but good.

No worries, just slow down and do one thing at a time and you'll get there.
You said to use clay dust for the dust bath...I have been using play sand...where do you get clay dust? Was my other reply in here? I don’t see it...hmmm
 

Beekissed

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Is there some sort of spray? I kept being tempted to buy a spray for chickens picking at eavjother and having sores. My rooster had a bare neck and bumm. The hens picked at him constantly. We couldnever figure out why they let him....do you think they were eating parasites?? Why wouldn’t they all have them? I’m so confused..why just one and not the whole flock..why a bald white skined-bird, with no sign of black dots? Ok...there I go again...getting OCD...
Your white chicken doesn't need any kind of Blue Kote spray....she's not got an open area of any kind that would cause any other birds to pick on her. I don't truly know why folks get birds that pick each other raw....I've never seen that happen in any of my flocks, likely because they free range. I figure it could stem from any number of reasons, but mostly from confinement with nothing else to do, too many birds in too small a space and no way to get away from one another.


You said to use clay dust for the dust bath...I have been using play sand...where do you get clay dust? Was my other reply in here? I don’t see it...hmmm
You can either buy it by the bag in places like Lowe's or Home Depot or, if you have clay soils, you can dig up some, let it dry out and crush it down a bit....the birds will do the rest. Play sand can do in a pinch but it's rarely fine enough to cling to the skin for long, so it doesn't smother potential pests nor protect the skin.

If you don't do it already, you could try a little ACV in their water also...works wonders for many things. Some people believe that other chickens pluck pin feathers out for the salty taste of the blood in the tip of them when they first emerge. I've never seen that in any of my flocks, but others say they see that and they solved it by putting a little salt in their water. I don't know that I'd do that, but might offer some kelp meal free choice, which is good for so many things but has the benefit of having natural salt in it. My chickens used to steal it from the sheep when they got a chance, but I generally don't need to offer minerals to the chickens due to free ranging.
 
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