Frost Bite in Roosters combs or wattles- Warning

Dang.. Double Dang.. I know that its better up here in the Canadian Winters to have smaller combs and wattles.. I know that in a unheated bird house that in the truly cold, they need to be encouraged to stay indoors..

But my birds like to come out for fresh air and the bright sunshine, which mocks us in its warmth but does a great job passive heating on my house to be fair to it.

DSCN4217None the less my big boy.. who I had moved to a larger area in the little barn as I had locked up the ducks, snuck out the cat door..  now I know that the birds can go out the cat door the hens, roos and the ducks have proven it, heck I even currently have one rabbit that is on the lame, and he drove me crazy because he had figured out how to let himself in and out of his grow out colony pen and so sometimes I would count and they would all be there and sometime he would be out..  sneaky sneaky bun!


But I was very unhappy to be out freezing my own bits and to see my rooster hunkered down by the van, trying to get out of the wind but sit in the sun, with very clear frostbite on his comb and wattles.. I have no idea how long he was out but given we had a frost bite warning for ten min that day, it did not have to be that long to have done this kind of damage.. Thankfully no damage to his toes or feet.


After picking him up and taking him back and locking his feathered self up, I have been keeping a close eye on him.. I do not think he will lose much at all on his wattles but his comb.. he is going to lose some of it.. I will post a followup and photos after he heals up.

1) I need to make sure he does not get a infection in the damaged areas

2) he needs a bit of extras in terms of feed and vit water to make sure he is getting the extras to heal.

3) I need to watch carefully that no other birds peck at him or get it open and bleeding, because trust me, those cute little fluffy butts will show their Rapter sides in a heartbeat if they get the chance. (I always laugh at the folks that right that chickens are sweet, haha.. they are itty bitty dinos)

Thankfully so far despite the cold temps, none of the other birds have any issues at this time and I hope that it stays this way.


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5 Responses to Frost Bite in Roosters combs or wattles- Warning

  1. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    Chickens cute? Not really…
    Chicks are, for sure; but anyone who’s ever tried to pick eggs out from under a broody hen knows about the “dark side”; )
    Sorry about your Sneaky Roo – but at least it’s easier to medicate a bird than a cat with an infected puncture wound):

  2. The minute it gets cold, the combs on our roos turn black around the edges. It really doesn’t appear to bother them. I mean, when One Eye was hurt and needed to heal, it was kind of obvious. But they didn’t look like your guy. They went black, not … bubbly … and the others don’t attack. I cringed at that picture.

    Chickens aren’t sweet. They’re nasty, cannibalistic beasts. The broody hens aren’t so bad. It’s a rooster who decides he doesn’t want you around. The claws on those guys are awful!!

  3. Sheri says:

    Poor guy! Hummmmm…….This is where a “Wintered” Greenhouse turned Chicken coop run could really help. Something they can go out into during the winter to get some sun but protect them from the winter elements. Poor fella.

  4. My rooster’s comb is looking pretty awful too. If he wasn’t so mean-spirited I’d try to rub some Vaseline into it for him. The only upside is that it’s humbled that miserable rooster into behaving himself. Chickens are natural born killers,lol.

  5. Pingback: Beware Cold Fatique in your livestock | Just another Day on the Farm

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