4 hens dead w/no symptoms, no trauma

Ethompson08

Hatching
Dec 12, 2020
3
2
5
This morning all 12 chickens were fine, came home this afternoon to let them out of coop and three hens were dead (olive egger, americauna, welsummer) then noticed a fourth hen (black maran) lethargic and laboring to breathe. She passed a few hours later. They are all about 6 months old. We’ve had big temp swings lately with mornings in the 20* then up to 70* during the day. We’re on the central coast of California. Could it be a respiratory virus or??? They’ve been on the same feed. Have been in a newly constructed coop for three weeks. I are out most days to scratch and forage. We have oak trees around but not much for plants weeds, etc.

I treated the rest of the flock with VetRx and moved them out of the coop to the horse trailer for the night. Plan to disinfect coop which is already pretty clean and clean out watered and feeder. Any suggestions?
 

dawg53

Humble
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
Nov 27, 2008
28,433
16,464
976
Glen St Mary, Florida
Check the feed in the feed sack and look for mold. Take a close look at the inside of the feed sack itself. Also notice if the feed has clumps, no matter what size.

Also, what are the ages of your birds and did you notice what their poop looked like; color, consistency?
Inspect the rest of your birds closely for external parasites, especially around the vent area.

What is your new coop made out of, type of wood?

Have you noticed these symptoms in your birds prior to their death? Wheezing, sneezing, head shaking, gurgling, watery eyes, runny nostrils, swollen face/eyes, bubbles in eyes?
I'm trying to cover all the bases here to get an idea what could possibly be the cause of death with your 3 hens.
Sorry for your losses.
 

LaFleche

Meadow Devil
9 Years
Sep 22, 2012
7,351
27,114
932
Germany
morning all 12 chickens were fine, came home this afternoon to let them out of coop and three hens were dead (olive egger, americauna, welsummer) then noticed a fourth hen (black maran) lethargic and laboring to breathe. She passed a few hours later. They are all about 6 months old. We’ve had big temp swings lately with mornings in the 20* then up to 70* during the day. We’re on the central coast of California.

I am sorry for your loss.

How big is your new coop (exact dimensions), and how much ventilation does it provide? Please upload some pictures of your set up.

If for instance the coop is small for 12 birds and has scarce on no ventilation, they might as well have died of asphyxiation in combination with overheating.

If the built, dimensions and ventilation of you coop make overheating/asphyxiation rather unlikely, you could send the dead hens in to have a necropsy performed by your state vet laboratory.
 
Last edited:

Ethompson08

Hatching
Dec 12, 2020
3
2
5
Check the feed in the feed sack and look for mold. Take a close look at the inside of the feed sack itself. Also notice if the feed has clumps, no matter what size.

Also, what are the ages of your birds and did you notice what their poop looked like; color, consistency?
Inspect the rest of your birds closely for external parasites, especially around the vent area.

What is your new coop made out of, type of wood?

Have you noticed these symptoms in your birds prior to their death? Wheezing, sneezing, head shaking, gurgling, watery eyes, runny nostrils, swollen face/eyes, bubbles in eyes?
I'm trying to cover all the bases here to get an idea what could possibly be the cause of death with your 3 hens.
Sorry for your losses.
Haven’t noticed any symptoms listed. Noticed a few runny poops but where normal brown/white color. Coop is made out of untreated lumber (fir I think) from Home Depot. Coop run is 8’x16’. We are in the process of building the house so the have a small kit house that’s well ventilated inside the run and separate nesting boxes and roosts in the run.
 

Ethompson08

Hatching
Dec 12, 2020
3
2
5
I am sorry for your loss.

How big is your new coop (exact dimensions), and how much ventilation does it provide? Please upload some pictures of your set up.

If for instance the coop is small for 12 birds and has scarce on no ventilation, they might as well have died of asphyxiation in combination with overheating.

If the built, dimensions and ventilation of you coop make overheating/asphyxiation rather unlikely, you could send the dead hens in to have a necropsy performed by your state vet laboratory.

Coop is made out of untreated lumber (fir I think) from Home Depot. Coop run is 8’x16’. We are in the process of building the house so the have a small kit house that’s well ventilated inside the run and separate nesting boxes and roosts in the run.
 

LaFleche

Meadow Devil
9 Years
Sep 22, 2012
7,351
27,114
932
Germany
Coop is made out of untreated lumber (fir I think) from Home Depot. Coop run is 8’x16’. We are in the process of building the house so the have a small kit house that’s well ventilated inside the run and separate nesting boxes and roosts in the run.
But how are the dimensions of the coop they had to stay in until you came home in the afternoon?
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom