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Nutrition during Bird Moulting

What is Bird Moulting?

A feather is a "dead" structure, somewhat analogous to hair or nails in humans. The hardness of a feather is caused by the formation of the protein keratin. Since feathers cannot heal themselves when damaged, they have to be completely replaced. The replacement of all or part of the feathers is called a moult. Moults produce feathers that match the age and sex of the bird, and sometimes the season.

Moulting occurs in response to a mixture of hormonal changes brought about by seasonal changes. The entire process is complex and many questions remain regarding how the process is controlled. A basic understanding of moulting patterns can, however, be a useful aid in identifying many species and in determining their age.  

There are two kinds of moults with different degrees of feather replacement.

·         In a complete moult all feathers are replaced.

·         In a partial moult only some feathers are replaced.

Damaged feathers are replaced during a moult. A feather that has been lost completely is replaced immediately.


It takes a lot of energy to build new feathers. Moulting is, therefore, often timed to coincide with periods of less strenuous demands, such as after nesting or before migration.

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Feeding a premium egg food during moulting, why is it important?


It is recommended that bird breeders use premium egg food such as  CéDé® egg food only as breeding feed for the young in the nest (coop) and then still for some time after the breeding period. The subsequent moulting of the birds however requires a varied diet.

The new feathering, which is built up during moulting, consists of 80% proteins.  These proteins, but also vitamins and minerals must be ingested to a sufficient degree with the food in order for the moulting process to run smoothly. 

During moulting, it makes sense to have the birds ingest daily ¼ of the daily ration of CéDé® egg food.



This article is brought to you by Borg Cardona & Co. Ltd , Tel 21442698.  Suppliers and distributors of leading premium Bird food and supplies.  Contact us for more information on 21442698 , sales@borg-cardona.com



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