Chicken With Red Bottom and No Feathers

Losing feathers is a common problem in most chicken breeds, especially exotic species. The problem occurs when your chicken develops a red bottom with no feathers around its vent areas.

There are several possible reasons chickens develop a red bottom and lose their feathers around their bums. It’s thus crucial you investigate why your birds could be having a red bottom and losing feathers.

5 Reasons Why Chickens Have Red Bottom and No Feathers

Chickens can have red bottoms and no feathers because of several reasons. These are the top 5 reasons your chickens have red bottom and no feathers on their vent areas.

– Molting

All chickens and birds molt a natural process whereby a bird loses its old feathers and replaces them with new ones. Nonetheless, poor nutrition and stress can accelerate this process. The molting process starts at a chicken’s head and goes down to the bird’s lower body.

A chicken can lose its feathers from the bottoms during molting. If you have a  molting chicken, you will most probably notice that the bird has a red bottom and no feathers. Furthermore, you will also observe that the bird is less active during molting. However, your chicken will grow its feathers, and the red bottom won’t persist for long after molting.

– Parasites

One of the several reasons chickens lose their feathers is parasites, which usually start attacking a chicken around its vent area. Different parasites affect chickens, ultimately causing the birds to lose feathers and develop a red bottom.

For instance, lice and mites contribute to feather loss in chickens, especially around the vent area. If you notice your chickens have a red bottom with no feathers, it’s good to check their vent areas for parasites.

Also, check for signs of redness, bare skin, and small parasites on the shaft of your birds’ feathers because it shows your chickens could be victims of parasite infestations.

– Vent Gleet

Vent gleet is a bacterial infection on a chicken’s vent area. This bacterial infection can lead to inflammation of the vent area and feather loss. Chickens with vent gleet show redness, sticky or falling feathers, and runny bottoms.

If you suspect your chickens could be having vent gleet, take them to a vent because this bacterial infection can be severe and also spread rapidly to other healthy chickens.

– Feather Picking

Another reason chickens develop red bottoms and lose their feathers is feather picking, which means your chickens could be pecking at each other, ultimately pulling out feathers. Feather picking can result from many factors, including poor nutrition, stress, cannibalism, and boredom.

Chickens with this habit usually target other chickens’ bums as the poor birds try to defend themselves while turning their backs. The result of feather picking can be a red bottom and feather loss in the vent area.

The reddening, in this case, will be sore, and the chickens can swell or have blood on their vent area. If a chicken has ever pecked you, you apparently know how painful it can be, and that’s why chickens lose their feathers and develop red bottoms due to constant pecking by the bullying members of the flock.

– Lack of Nutrition

Nutritional deficiency can also make chickens lose their feathers and develop red bottoms. For instance, chickens with a protein deficiency usually have problems growing feathers, especially after molting.

The feathers can take a long time to grow, which leaves chickens with red bottoms. Furthermore, a lack of essential nutrients in a chicken’s diet can cause the bird to lose feathers, particularly around the vent area. It’s thus vital to ensure your chickens have a balanced diet to stop them from developing red bottoms and losing their feathers.

Can a Chicken Die from Red Bottom?

Yes, chickens can die from red bottom, especially if they are bleeding on the vent area. Birds will lose blood, stop laying, and eventually die if the red bottom is due to severe parasitic infestations or feather picking.

It thus helps to deal with the problem of red bottom and feather loss before the issues get out of hand, ultimately making you lose your chickens.

How to Treat Chickens with Red Bottom and No Feathers?

Although it’s rare for chickens to have red bottoms or lose their feathers around the vent area, you will probably spot a chicken or two in the flock with a red bottom and missing feathers.

Fortunately, you can deal with the problem before it becomes severe, ultimately costing your chickens’ life. Below are a few ideas on how to treat chickens with red bottoms and no feathers.

– Isolate The Sick Chickens

It’s good to isolate the chickens with red bottoms and missing feathers from the flock, particularly if the birds have red bottoms due to feather picking. Else, other chickens will continue pecking at the birds’ bum as long as the birds are living in the same coop.

Isolating the chickens also helps you monitor the birds as they recover from red bottoms and grow feathers around their vent areas. Keep the affected chickens in a separate cage as you look into how you can help them heal.

– Improve Your Chickens’ Diet

Red bottoms and loss of feathers in chickens can be due to poor nutrition, especially if your chickens aren’t pecking at each other or if they don’t have parasite infestations. Take into consideration the type of diet you give to your birds.

Improve the diet to ensure the birds don’t suffer from nutritional deficiencies. For instance, add more protein-rich foods to your chickens’ diet, especially during molting, when feather loss is inevitable.

Protein will help the chickens grow feathers quickly and are less likely to develop red bottoms or lose feathers on their vent area. Furthermore, protein will also help the birds recover soon because it helps repair the worn-out tissues.

– Treat The Chickens from Parasite Infestations

Before looking into how you can treat red bottoms and feather loss in your birds, it helps to check for signs of parasite infestations in your chickens. You can’t successfully treat chickens with red bottoms and missing feathers if there are some nasty parasites on their vent area.

Therefore, start with treating your chickens from parasite infestation because the parasites will continue attacking the birds’ vent areas, making the red bottoms severe. You can also spray some pesticides in the cage to deal with parasite infestations.

Clean The Birds’ Bottoms

The first thing to do when you spot some of your chickens with red bottoms and missing feathers is to clean their bottoms. Cleaning will help you get a clear look at the chicken’s bottom.

It’s pretty simple to clean a chicken’s bottom. First off, trim the stray feathers on the chicken’s bottom using a sharp pair of scissors. Warm some water and mix it with Epsom salt.

Soak a soft cloth in the warm water and start cleaning the chicken’s bottom gently, taking care not to cause bruises on the area. Epsom is among the most effective and safest substances to clean messy chickens’ bottoms. Furthermore, it has high magnesium content, which is good for relaxing the muscles in the vent area.

– Use Antibacterial Solution

Using an antibacterial solution to clean the red bottom in your chickens can be effective, particularly if your birds have red bottoms and missing feathers due to vent gleet.

Rub the antibacterial solution on the chickens’ vent area. You can also take the birds to the vet for specialized treatment if you don’t understand the best way to deal with vent gleet.


Red bottom and missing feathers can be devastating for chicken keepers, particularly when they don’t understand precisely why their birds could be having this problem. Fortunately, you can deal with this problem if you know why your chickens could have red bottoms and missing feathers around their vent areas.

Most importantly, have a vet check your chickens if you cannot treat the birds with red bottoms and missing feathers.

avatar James
Hey, I'm James, a hardworking homesteader for more than 30 years. I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment that comes from tending my flock. I've raised chickens and ducks for eggs and meat for many years. I also have experience with other poultry too. Learn more

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