Monday, August 29, 2011

Molting Mei

Our girl Mei hasn't been herself lately. We think she had sour crop a few weeks ago and with the introduction of the new chicks, she has been quite stressed out. She hasn't laid an egg in two weeks.

Thinking she might be egg bound, we bathed her in warm water and I did unspeakable things involving a latex glove and olive oil. We started to notice that she was losing some feathers. I began to panic.

Today, we came home to an entire backyard of feathers. We were relieved to discover that our girl is simply molting.

Thanks to Melissa B. and Backyard Farming for saving the day!

She looks a bit disheveled and has bare spots on her waddle and wings. Molting is stressful so we will need to supplement her food with some protein, like cottage cheese or yogurt.

The molting could last as long as 12 weeks and so could the lack of eggs. Good thing we have two other birds still producing.

Who knew chicken tending could be this exciting!


  1. Merigold didn't lay for about 4-5 weeks. When she looked so so terrible I noticed pinfeathers growing in. No wonder our old girl was so cranky! Pearl is right there with Mei. She's still laying, though, for the time being. I'm just glad that I knew the answer to this particular question. Who knew the things we'd do when we decided to get chickens!?

  2. What a sweet and pretty bird she is! I hope she is doing well during her molting cycle :)

  3. Aw, Mei. So sorry you're feeling and looking so crummy! Melissa, freeze-dried mealworms are an excellent source of protein. I've been giving them to my gals during the molt, and I would swear that they help speed things up.