Most of our chickens are going through molting lately. Their molting season can range between August and January. This is the birds shed their old feathers and regrow new feathers. Molting consumes a lot of protein, and the hens stop laying eggs when they are molting. Kiki, the Barred Rock hen, is going through her molting right now. She has been molting almost two weeks now. She looks tired and shy during molting. She likes to shelter and rest in our living room, while I work on the computer.
This photo is from 10 days ago when Kiki started molting. The bare spots were created by the rooster mounting on her, and she looked vulnerable. So it’s good that she can renew her feathers every year.
This is what Kiki looked like today. You can see a tons of pin feathers on her rear end. The new feathers come out from the skin with wax-like tubes. Actually, this tube is made of protein, and the birds eat some of it as they preen. She spends a lot of time preening and breaking these wax tubes to deploy new features.