I have a flock of 25 five month old hens that just started laying recently, I also have one rooster of the same age, and one six year old hen. Two days ago I noticed that one of the hens had a large amount of blood around her vent; I separated her from the others and cleaned the affected area. Today she looked much better, and in the past two days has laid two eggs. I was forced to return her to the flock when I found three more hens in similar condition, one almost unconscious, other two doing rather well. At the same time that I found these three (P.M.) I found one hen dead. Late this evening when I went out I found that an additional 4 or 5 had bloody vents. I’m really worried at this point; I’ve never encountered anything like this before in all of the flocks I’ve raised over the years. I started looking online for possible causes when I discovered the first case, at first I thought egg retention or frail eggs breaking internally (the first hen laid fine after I separated her and I haven’t found evidence of smashed eggs in the coop). I now wonder if it is prolapse, I wouldn’t describe the vent as protruding just bloody. It seems weird that this is happening to half the flock though. About a week ago I noticed that the chickens (male and female) were shaking their heads in response to noise (ie. talking, whistling, etc.) could this have something to do with the problem. I really need help, and thanks for any information you could provide.