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Author Topic: Scaley, ugly chicken feet  (Read 9654 times)
Cindi
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« on: October 16, 2007, 11:22:05 PM »

I see on a couple of my chickens these ugly scaley chicken feet.  Most of the hens have nice smooth legs and feet.  But there are two that have hideous scaley growths.  Does anyone know if this is normal?  I have a fear that they might have something nasty and we will have to cut off their feet  evil Wink Smiley  Have a wonderful and great day in our beautiful world.  Cindi

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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2007, 01:16:53 AM »

Cindi,

That is a scale fungus--I forget the exact name--it is probably best understood if described as Athlete's Foot for chickens. 
The treatment for it is to put the chickens on dryer ground and bathe the feet in vegetable oil once or twice a day for 2 weeks. 

Most people who raise a limited number of birds for showing would probably take the time to treat it--for me, every bird that develops it meets with an ax-ident.  So far I've only had 1 bird go under the blade.

PS: it is usually seen on older chickens, like over 2-3 years old.  People keeping a flock for egg/meat production usually don't have birds live long enough to develop the condition.  I use split rings of different colors to date my chickens plus an additional color to denote natural hatch.  My goal is to eventually have all my chickens natural hatch.
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Cindi
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« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2007, 10:03:09 AM »

Brian, good knowledge.  It loooked to me like it was some kind of scale ugly condition.  These layers would all be in their second year, we got them in spring of 2006, and they were laying by May, so they were months old to begin with.  Maybe it is their time for the soup pot.  The chickens are on reasonably dry ground, they are not standing in muck any more.  But of course were before.  We have separated the ducks and geese from the chickens and the chickens have their own yard back.  My sister put hemlock shavings all over their yard (that was alot of work) and it remains dry.  The ducks were the ones that made such muck, their love of water is unbelievable!!!!  So, I bet that they contracted this fungus when the ducks were in their space.   I don't like the thought of any unhealthiness going on around my place with animals, so I will be encouraging her to lop the heads of any chickens displaying this disease.  And besides, they must be getting rather old for laying eggs, although they are still producing well enough.

The old Mother and Father of my Sister-in-Law came down to visit from Burns Lake last summer.  That is way up north, cold, cold cold, but very beautiful.  They are old time farmers and loved our chickens and fowls.  She showed my sister how to figure out if hens were laying or not.  It would appear that you have to put a couple of fingers up their butt to feel the size of the bones or something inside.  Ooops, family forum?  Anyways, this was so gross to me that I did not even take the time to watch this demonstration.  I guess it works, but it is not for me (and my Sister doesn't like to do it either), but she had the guts to do it and she did!!!! Eeeeks........even thinking about it makes my blood run cold!!!!

There must be a better way (hint, help).

We are incubating our own chickens for meat and laying.  We hatched out about a dozen two weeks ago and have 48 more now in the incubator.  It is a new experience this incubating and it is very cool.  We purchased a second hand one and it holds about 120 eggs I would venture, but we are starting out slow.  Trying to hone the skill of incubation and raising chickens.

We don't know what breed the chickens will be though.  We have the red layers, maybe comets or something, I am not sure and two roosters, so I have no clue what these chickens will be like.  We really don't know an awful lot about genetics of birds. 

I think the most confusing thing is:  how do you tell the male chicks from the female?  I guess I need to do more studying this winter.  We will have more chicks coming in around 3 weeks, they went in the incubator yesterday.

We hatched out about 12 (or so) Muscovey ducks and they are really cute now.  Stories to tell of these, but I don't have much time this morning, kids will be all up soon and then I am really busy for a couple of hours, but this is what the two roosters look like that breed with the chickens.  Have a wonderful and beautiful day, in our great ol' world.  Cindi

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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2007, 11:45:15 AM »

another way to tell if they are laying is by the color of their legs...if yellow they are not laying...if white they are. you can use beak color for that too. there are also nest boxes that are called trap boxes...the hen checks in but can't check out until you let her.
it is very hard to sex chickens and even the experienced make mistakes sometimes when doing it. there are sex linked breed crosses you can do and I think Brian has some experience with that. I have crossed rhode island red rooster with barred rock hen and the result is sex linked with the male being barred. i'm sure you can research the links somewhere online. but if you are breeding non-pure bred chickens to begin with that ain't gonna work.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2007, 09:27:20 PM »

Having an incubator to raise chickens for meat is a good thing, I have an incubator for that too.
What I'm trying to do is develop the broody trait back into the chickens--many breeds have had setting on the nest breed out of them--especially those "toy" breeds that are raised primarily for show.
I've lost several sets of eggs in the incubator due to power outages from car/pole acidents, wind storms, and various other things so reliance on a incubator is not always advisable.


There are several ways to determine if a hen is laying; the one your sister was being shown was the distance/flexability of the 2 bones on each side of the vent, it tight and stiff, the chicken is not laying.  Another way is the color of the legs--yelow if laying, white if not, but on chickens with white eggs this doesn't work.  A third way is by the size and color of the comb, a laying chicken should show a red plumb comb for her breed, if the comb is pale and shrunken then the hen is not laying.  I like the last method best because it can be done visually, regardless of breed characteristics.

On sexing chicks there are 3 ways I know of: 1. The male has a wet, redish vent with a bump;whereas the hen's vent is paler and no bump--to sex a chick this way it should be done within the 1st 72 hours from hatch and requires pressing the abdomin to clear the vent of debre.  2. Newly hatched chicks have miniture flight feathers on their wings. The hens is uneven looking almost sawtoothed.  The Cockerals have flight feathers all the same length.  This is by far the easiest method on day old chicks.  3. The cockerals will have a more prominate comb than the hens, however with breeds that have strawberry combs or feathered top knots it is problematic. 
At 2 weeks of age the cockerals will have a more obvious comb, the birds should be showing good feathering by then so the feather checking method won't work.  Sexing chickens at hatch inables the grower to raise the cockerals for the table and the hens for egg laying.
   
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« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2007, 09:47:11 AM »

Cindi, please don't cut off the chicken's feet, they need them for walking, but if you do chicken feet make good necklaces! grin evil
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Cindi
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« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2007, 09:55:40 AM »

Brian, wow, some really good information.  Yes, I have seen a few of the chickens with that smaller looking comb, I will have to go and see now if they are the ones with the ugly legs.

I am passing you information onto my Sister, she is the one that works mainly with the chickens and she needs to know this information.  We are incubating quite a few more eggs and it would be nice to know the gender.  Awesome facts and thanks.  Have a wonderful and beautiful day in this greatest of our life.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2007, 11:24:03 AM »

Cindi,

If you have scaly ugly chicken feet you may want to try a loofah and a moisturizer. Maybe I would go with the mary janes over the spiked heels for a little bit also.  cool

Sincerely.
Brendhan
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2007, 01:00:05 PM »

some asians consider chicken feet a delicacy....the first year we raised broilers an asian guy drove all the way out here to pick up the feet from some fresh killed chickens.
and i think Brian has the feet color wrong.....if they are laying the feet are white...if not the feet are yellow.
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Cindi
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« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2007, 10:00:33 PM »

randydrivesabus.  That sex-linking genetic thing is very interesting.

Brendhan.  I think that you are one warped dude  Wink Smiley  You come up with the weirdest comments, but I likey them.  You have a very odd way of replying to so many posts, and again, I likey, it makes me laugh.

Have a wonderful and beauty of a day in this great thing we know as life.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2007, 10:01:43 PM »

some asians consider chicken feet a delicacy....the first year we raised broilers an asian guy drove all the way out here to pick up the feet from some fresh killed chickens.
and i think Brian has the feet color wrong.....if they are laying the feet are white...if not the feet are yellow.

You maybe right, my chickens have naturally white legs so it is hard to tell.  They're white whether laying or not which is why I do not rely on that method.
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2007, 06:07:44 AM »

some asians consider chicken feet a delicacy....the first year we raised broilers an asian guy drove all the way out here to pick up the feet from some fresh killed chickens.
and i think Brian has the feet color wrong.....if they are laying the feet are white...if not the feet are yellow.

You maybe right, my chickens have naturally white legs so it is hard to tell.  They're white whether laying or not which is why I do not rely on that method.

i don't either. but I don't cull my hens either so i don't really care if they are laying...well I care...I like getting eggs.
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« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2007, 02:43:50 PM »

The old Mother and Father of my Sister-in-Law came down to visit from Burns Lake last summer.  That is way up north, cold, cold cold, but very beautiful.  They are old time farmers and loved our chickens and fowls.  She showed my sister how to figure out if hens were laying or not.  It would appear that you have to put a couple of fingers up their butt to feel the size of the bones or something inside.  Ooops, family forum?  Anyways, this was so gross to me that I did not even take the time to watch this demonstration.  I guess it works, but it is not for me (and my Sister doesn't like to do it either), but she had the guts to do it and she did!!!! Eeeeks........even thinking about it makes my blood run cold!!!

Probably a little misunderstanding here as to the way to check the pelvic bone. If you feel the back side of the chicken you will feel the pelvic bone, Prees your fingers against it, If one finger fits between the bone the chicken is not laying, two fingers is an indication that she might be laying, and three fingers slipping between the bones inducate she is laying quite well. Fast and easy and nothing gross at all...  Wink
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Cindi
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« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2007, 11:23:13 PM »

Romanhawk, great info, so glad it is not actually a gross action, I must have misunderstood the directions  Smiley Wink  Sounds pretty simple, eh?  Have a wonderful and great day in our great life.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2007, 05:59:55 PM »

From what I understand, the reason the legs and beak will be white instead of yellow and the comb pale and shriveled is because the pigmentation goes into yolk production. An older hen who has outlived her usefullness has passed along all pigment to eggs over the length of her egg production. Time for the soup pot.
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