Skip to content

Follow us!

FREE Shipping Over $19!

Get in touch with us

Managing Molting in Chickens During Warm Weather

Managing Molting in Chickens During Warm Weather

Understanding Molting

Molting usually begins in late summer or early fall, but it can sometimes occur during warm weather. During this time, chickens may look scruffy, lose feathers, and reduce egg production. Molting requires significant energy, so your chickens will need extra care and attention to get through this period.

Signs of Molting

  • Feather Loss: You’ll notice feathers scattered around the coop and on your chickens.
  • Reduced Egg Production: Chickens often stop laying eggs or significantly reduce production during molting.
  • Scruffy Appearance: Chickens may look ragged or unkempt as new feathers push out old ones.
  • Increased Appetite: Molting chickens may eat more to meet the nutritional demands of feather regrowth.

Providing Proper Nutrition

Feather regrowth requires a lot of protein and other nutrients. Here’s how to adjust your chickens’ diet during molting:

  • High-Protein Feed: Switch to a high-protein feed or supplement their regular feed with protein-rich foods. Feathers are about 85% protein, so adequate protein intake is crucial.
  • Protein-Rich Treats: Offer treats such as mealworms, cooked eggs, fish, or peas to boost protein levels.
  • Balanced Diet: Ensure they continue to get a balanced diet with vitamins and minerals. Adding a poultry vitamin supplement can help.

Keeping Chickens Comfortable

Warm weather can exacerbate the stress of molting. Here’s how to keep your chickens comfortable:

  • Provide Shade: Ensure the coop and run have plenty of shaded areas to protect chickens from direct sunlight.
  • Adequate Ventilation: Good airflow in the coop helps keep the environment cool and reduces heat stress.
  • Cool Water: Always provide fresh, cool water. Consider adding ice cubes to the waterer on particularly hot days.
  • Dust Baths: Chickens use dust baths to stay cool and clean. Ensure they have access to a dry, shaded area for dust bathing.

Minimizing Stress

Molting is a stressful time for chickens, so minimizing additional stressors is important:

  • Limit Handling: Avoid handling your chickens more than necessary, as they may be sensitive and uncomfortable.
  • Avoid Introducing New Birds: Introducing new chickens to the flock during molting can increase stress and lead to pecking and bullying.
  • Quiet Environment: Keep the environment as calm and quiet as possible to reduce stress levels.

Monitoring Health

Regularly check on your chickens to ensure they’re coping well with molting:

  • Watch for Signs of Illness: Look out for signs of illness or unusual behavior, such as lethargy or loss of appetite.
  • Feather Growth: Monitor feather regrowth to ensure it’s progressing normally. New feathers, called pin feathers, will look like small, pointy quills.
  • Weight Maintenance: Keep an eye on their weight. Molting chickens should not lose significant weight. If they do, it may indicate a health issue.


Molting is a natural and necessary process for chickens, but it can be particularly taxing during warm weather. By providing proper nutrition, ensuring comfort, minimizing stress, and monitoring their health, you can help your chickens navigate this challenging period successfully. With a little extra care and attention, your flock will come through molting healthy and ready for another year of egg production and feathered beauty.

Remember, patience is key. Molting is temporary, and with your support, your chickens will soon be sporting a beautiful new set of feathers. Happy chicken keeping!