Chicken Help

Help Me! OR: Search by Category

Q: What is molting?


Molting occurs once a year in mature birds, normally in late summer or autumn. The birds will lose their feathers and regrow new ones--a way of refreshing their plumage for the winter so they will stay warm.

Birds can go through either a hard molt or a soft molt. A hard molt means all the feathers are lost almost at once so molting is over relatively quickly. A soft molt means the feathers are lost and regrown gradually. Sometimes you may hardly notice a soft molt, except as a reduction in laying. Molting takes a few weeks or more, depending on the "hardness" of the molt--it can seem like a hardship when you don't have delicious fresh eggs!

Commercial entities tend to breed for a hard molt, because birds lay fewer (or no) eggs while they are molting, since feather growth uses up so many of your hen's resources. Natural molting is brought on by shorter days, but a molt can be caused by other triggers. For instance, factory farms will often starve a bird for several days to induce them to molt all at once so it's easier to manage. Can you imagine the type of person you'd have to be to think it's okay to starve chickens if it's done in the name of the bottom line? You can imagine how My Pet Chicken feels about this abuse!

Related Items:

Chunky Chicken CrumblesChunky Chicken Crumbles

Chunky Chicken Crumbles

In Stock
Chicken With Attitude SignChicken With Attitude Sign

Chicken With Attitude Sign

In Stock
 Chicken Treat Ball Chicken Treat Ball

Chicken Treat Ball

In Stock
Poultry Grit, 5lb bagPoultry Grit, 5lb bag

Poultry Grit, 5lb bag

In Stock
Dried Mealworms, 1lb 4 ozDried Mealworms, 1lb 4 oz

Dried Mealworms, 1lb 4 oz

In Stock
Wooden EggsWooden Eggs

Wooden Eggs

In Stock
Chicken Fun ToyChicken Fun Toy

Chicken Fun Toy

In Stock
The Chicken Health HandbookThe Chicken Health Handbook

The Chicken Health Handbook

In Stock
 Vintage style egg basket Vintage style egg basket

Vintage style egg basket

In Stock