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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is something I have never come across before in my flock.

One hen has moulted all her flight feathers on both wings except the 2 outer ones on each wing.

I found her on the ground unable to fly back to her nest box. I though she was sick so caught her up and noticed the missing feathers.

Now I have her penned up in her box with her mate and eggs.

I have never seen my pigeons molt like that to make them flightless! Its not a predator attack or from fighting as its exactly the same both wings.

Has anyone had a pigeon molt like this? Do I need to worry? All my other pigeons are fine.

Thanks.
 

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Molt

Did you recently change the type feed? I have seen pigeons that were put on a high protein feed when the molt is coming on lose a lot of feathers all at once. A change in feed can accelerate the molt. I can't say as I have seen them lose all their flights, but I have seen them lose all the feathers on the head and back to where they look almost naked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks

Did you recently change the type feed? I have seen pigeons that were put on a high protein feed when the molt is coming on lose a lot of feathers all at once. A change in feed can accelerate the molt. I can't say as I have seen them lose all their flights, but I have seen them lose all the feathers on the head and back to where they look almost naked.
You are amazing and correct I think!

This hens last clutch of eggs had very thin shells and they got punctured and squashed so did not hatch.

I noticed she is a very picky eater and only eating a few kind of seeds from the mix and won't eat the oyster shell grit or egg shells.

So I added chicken layer pellets for more calcium and nutrition, AND, I did not refill the feeder until all the feed was eaten.

I am glad is not a medical disease thing.

This pair is driving me crazy, because they are my only pair of black Old Dutch Capuchines. I am finding it impossible to get any more this colour and this pair has failed to breed for various reasons for 3 clutches of eggs!!!! I even tried breeding the black male to red and white females but keep getting red offspring.. and when they breed, just more red ones!!!

This time she has only laid one egg... and again the shell looks rather thin even with the layer pellets. I thought I saw a dint in it.. but was in a hurry to feed and water the birds as I had to go out, so did not have a close look. Tomorrow I will know for sure......

Keeping my fingers crossed!
 

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Thanks

Thanks, you need to talk to my wife. :D

I don't know about amazing, but I do read a lot. The reason I know about the molt issue is that some racing homer and roller breeders that fly competition use the trick of switching over to high protein in late summer when the molt is approaching so that the birds will molt in a full new set of flights for the races and roller competitions. I have also seen it work on my own birds.

BTW: I don't know if your red hens are recessive red or Ash Red but if you keep pairing your black cock bird to them you will eventually get a black off them. You are just running into the luck of the draw.
 

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Off topic, but you need to give them a calcium plus D3 supplement, as the more they have thin eggs, and you let them lay again and again, she is just depleting her calcium stores more and more. She will run into other problems. Something like calciBoost that you put in the drinking water, and can even give individually to a bird works great.
The pellets may not be enough, and if she is also on eggs, and not getting outside into the sunshine, then she isn't getting vitamin D3 either. She needs that to be able to utilize any calcium she gets. You probably don't have the CalciBoost or Calcivet there, but you can get calcium and vit. D3.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for all the great help and advise. Very interesting.

I have FANTASTIC news today! That dint I thought I saw on the egg was it actually hatching. This morning I went to check on them and saw they have a newly hatched squab.

Too early to tell what colour it will be... keeping my fingers crossed!!!

On another note, I can't get any of that calcium stuff. However, I have started to add powdered cuttle fish bone over her feed.. and keeping up with the layer pellets, which she will eat after her seed is used up.

Once the chick is older I am going to make sure the hen has her time outside the coop in the sun. I never thought about the vit D thing. All the birds go outside a lot as the coop is open all afternoon for them to free range. But she is a home bird and rarely comes out to play.

Thanks again people, and I'll let you know what colour the squab turns out to be.
 

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Congratulations on your new baby. The cuttlebone will stick to the seed better with just a tiny bit of oil mixed well into the seed. Use oil just on what will be fed that day, as oil goes bad if left on for long. Then sprinkle the powder over it and mix in. You shouldn't fly birds that are on eggs or babies. If something were to happen to them, then you will have orphans. Giving her calcium now and waiting till chick is older won't help with the vitamin D3. She needs it to be able to use the calcium you are giving her now.
 
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