Another hen dying!! HELP!! FAST!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by liloredhead, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. liloredhead

    liloredhead Out Of The Brooder

    14
    0
    22
    Aug 20, 2009
    I have lost 4 birds over a 5 month period. All with the same symptoms and I just can't figure it out. I have 4 heritage breed hens, 20 buffs. I have 2 roosters of the heritage, we believe them to be Sussex. Anyway, the bird begins by having diarrhea and panting. This girl has hung on for four days, but usually they die within 2 days once the symptoms begin. She is panting, has poor balance, isn't walking much at all, has a dirty matted vent, has watery diarrhea, and has a purple thin comb. Any suggestions? I have no mites of any sort. My buffs are all healthy. Several of my heritage breeds keep a dirty vent all the time, while my buffs all look fabulous. I don't know what I am doing wrong. I feed them leftovers 2-3 times a week, they have oyster shell, they free range about 5 times a week, they have layer and grower and scratch. Free water cleaned every 3 days with a scrub brush and no chemicals. They have a very, very clean pen. Cleaned almost daily. HELP! I am going to lose another one if I don't figure this out. I live in AZ and it was hot this summer and I thought that was the problem, so I made a chicken misting system. It is not hot anymore. SO that's not it. Suggestions?? I love my birds like we all do and I do not want to continue losing them.
     
  2. Nif

    Nif Chillin' With My Peeps

    235
    0
    109
    Dec 16, 2008
    Ohio
    Any chance they could have gotten into anything poisonous...like mushrooms?
    Or moldy feed?

    How old are these chickens?
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2009
  3. chickenbottom

    chickenbottom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 30, 2008
    hollister, florida
    the purple comb is the thing that sticks out the most to me. thats a sign for respiratory problems. is her crop impacted or sour by any chance other than that, i really dont know what else to tell you i just hope someone knows exactly what the problem is.
     
  4. M@M@2four

    [email protected]@2four Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2008
    USA
    Quote:Your chicken misting system may be the problem--the heat and wet may be causing mold or some sort of bacteria you may not see to the naked eye--sounds like you may have mold/bacteria spores growing somewhere(possibly even in the dirt) as chickens like to scratch and peck at the dirt. I would relocate them temporarily, clean the area completely out and use a bleach/water solution and spray everything down, let dry completely before replacing bedding, food, and water. I personally like to use pine shavings for bedding. I would also suggest Oxine--that is the best disinfectent I have found--I found the best deal on Amazon--$25/Gallon. This stuff is awesome and the best! Good luck!
     
  5. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    4,871
    24
    251
    Jan 11, 2007
    The purple comb indicates cardiac insufficiency.
    How old are your birds and what is the weather like at the moment?
    What "scraps" are you feeding (too much salt will kill a bird and if your heritage breed is pigging out on something salty that might be the answer)
     
  6. ChooksChick

    ChooksChick BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist

    7,738
    101
    321
    Aug 17, 2008
    Larry, KS
    My Coop
    What about worms?

    I'm really not sure...
     
  7. liloredhead

    liloredhead Out Of The Brooder

    14
    0
    22
    Aug 20, 2009
    Ok, I will disinfect but I do not think it is the misting system as I lost all the birds but this one long before I put it in. It's possible, so I will do what you suggest just in case. I will do anything! I lost my hen. She died not long after I posted. I thought maybe egg bound, but I couldn't find anything that resembled the suggestions when I searched the forum.

    My curiosity is this............why ONLY the heritage breeds and why only one bird or so a month. We don't have any mushrooms, it's Arizona! No mold in the feed. It's kept in the garage in NEW garbage cans and they eat it very quickly. The heritage breed birds, I only have four left, are HUGE birds, and they are about 7 months old now. Everyone that I have lost I have lost just like this. About one a month. NO BUFFS have died. I have 20 buffs and they are all fine. I use regular shavings from the feed store and I have a super clean environment. The weather is middle 80's dry as always!!! I feed ONLY salad stuff. Red tomatoes, cukes, squash, a melon here and there, and bread. Nothing else. I know the poisonous stuff as well, and have avoided anything poisonous.

    This is so perplexing. I just don't understand. There are no mites, there has never been a chicken pen here before so what they could get from virgin ground I have no idea. And I do not use poisons, so....... I keep their food and water immaculate, I change their bedding. These chickens are my friends. I spend time with them. They are gentled and loving. It's heart breaking. What am I doing wrong?????

    Please if you have more thoughts I'll try anything!!!!!!
     
  8. fourfeathers

    fourfeathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    248
    1
    129
    Mar 7, 2008
    Western Kentucky
    I'd take a fecal sample in to a vet to at least rule something out like coccidia or worm problem.
     
  9. fourfeathers

    fourfeathers Chillin' With My Peeps

    248
    1
    129
    Mar 7, 2008
    Western Kentucky
    I am not familiar with Heritage breeds. How big and how fast do they grow? Is the comb floppy also? Panting with exertion? Watery poo? Could be heat combined with cardiac problems. Is there a state vet where you could take one for a necropsy?
     
  10. M@M@2four

    [email protected]@2four Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2008
    USA
    Quote:SO sorry!! I'm wondering if there is something else outside their pen, like wild birds bringing in a sickness or disease--the perplexing part is that it's not effecting your other birds, right? If you already told me this, I apologize, but did you buy the birds as chicks or hatch from eggs--there may be a disease they are carrying that doesn't effect them until later. At this point, I would call my state vet and ask where I can get a Necropsy done. That way you can find out what is causing this, cause all we can do it give our best guess. Sorry!!! [​IMG] Please keep us posted!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by