Originally Posted by abbevilleoz
I think where I may be failing is not keeping with these kind of treatment regimens long enough. When she shows improvement I back off and she blows back up.
Unfortunately, they can tell us what's wrong, if they're getting better or worse.
I just keep trying things until I find some thing that works.
I bought a pair of blacks last year. Really nice birds, "name" line. Paid quite a bit, for me, for 2 chickens.
No fertile eggs. For a year. Hen is a good layer, big eggs for line bred birds. Made me sick.
I noticed the roo had droppings constantly layered on his feathers. Cleaned him up, figured that was the problem.
No fertile eggs. None.
This year, same problem. Droppings stuck to feathers. I clean him up, decided he needed a trim, and did a little "manscaping" on him, gave the hen a trim too.
When I inspected my work I noticed his vent was cracked and bloody. Treated him for a couple of weeks with triple antibiotic ointment (don't get caught without this, it's essential) and his issues improved.
The pair, and they're not young, are throwing fertile eggs at about an 80% rate. I've hatched several chicks from them.
Keep digging (yuck), and you'll figure out what's going on eventually.