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Lethargic hen with feather loss

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
I have 6 hens. One is 2 years old, the others are 1. One of them has been lethargic, not laying, has feather loss above her tail feathers, under her wings and on her chest, and is separating herself from the flock, so there is obviously a problem. Because egg production has been a bit lower over the past few weeks and a couple of other girls were missing feathers, I assumed lice or mites. I checked each girl (I saw nothing), then sprayed each with a garlic, lavender essential oil, and water mixture and sprinkled each with DE. I cleaned out the coop and sprinkled with DE, paying special attention to the cracks and roosts. She didn't seem to improve. Her crop is fine. She isn't prolapsed or egg bound. She is breathing fine. Her eyes are clear. She has had some diarrhea, so that I've had to bathe her and clean her vent feathers. She has lost quite a bit of weight. Her comb is a bit discolored and has some darkish areas. I can't tell if they are scabs from the rest of the girls running her off or pox. I'm open to suggestions!
post #2 of 2

She may be sick, and being pecked by others. I would try to get her droppings checked for coccidia and worms by a local vet. You should be able to see whether or not she has lice or mites on her skin, especially around the vent. That would require something like permethrin or Sevin dust to treat both chickens and coop. At her age she could be suffering from a reproductive infection or egg yolk peritonitis. Those and other conditions are common in hens 2 and older. Check her crop to make sure that it is not impacted, and is emptying by morning. 

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