Broody hen covered in fire ants-eye swollen shut-need advice quick!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by skya328, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. skya328

    skya328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 10, 2008
    Dallas, TX
    Our broody hen has been sitting on her eggs since about Sept 1. She made a nest in some tall grass. We covered her with a cage to protect her. Today we mowed the grass near her so we could turn the cage around her. When I crawled in the cage to check on her, I noticed that she was covered with fire ants. Her left eye is completely swollen shut and she has bites all over her head.

    We decided to move her and the eggs into the tractor. I picked her up and my husband moved the eggs into a rubbermaid bin with some hay in it. We put her in the coop part of the tractor and set her on her eggs.

    I ned some advice on what to look for and what to do with her. I checked on her an hour after we put her in there and she wasn't sitting on the eggs, so I put her back on them. I'm afraid that if she stops sitting on them we will lose any potential babies. Also, I'm nervous that the amount of ant bites could harm the hen.

    This is her first go at sitting on eggs....and ours too. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!!

    Edited to add pics

    This is the left eye - swollen shut
    [​IMG]

    Right eye
    [​IMG]

    Top of head (Sorry...not a great pic)
    [​IMG]

    Also....I just checked on her and she is sitting on the eggs. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2009
  2. Cheery Cluck

    Cheery Cluck Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 13, 2009
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    I'm not sure that this would help but maybe make a poultice of oatmeat and spread that on the bites. That's what I do when I get bites so I don't see why it can't help a chicken...
     
  3. boaz

    boaz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 26, 2009
    Woodville, MS
    If she is ok at this point, the ant bites should gradually clear up. If she has been sitting for a while, see if she will drink a bit of water, you may have to place it next to her. It actually is good for her to get up for a bit and then reset the eggs.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2009
  4. skya328

    skya328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thank you! She was sitting on the eggs this morning, so hopefully all is well.
     
  5. Three Cedars Silkies

    Three Cedars Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    Apr 17, 2008
    Gainesville, Fl.
    You've done all the right things by getting her moved. If you think she is in pain...which she probably is...you can dissolve 1 aspirin (not tylenol) in 8 oz. of water and put that in her waterer for a day or so. I've used that forumula many times and never had any problems...even for younger chicks.

    It's difficult to help but not so much that she gets up off the eggs. I think the idea of an oatmeal poultice is a good one.

    Put the oatmeal in a blender or food processor (dry) and grind it to a powder. Then add cool water to make a paste and put some on her head.

    Feed her some special treats...chopped boiled egg, yogurt, tuna fish. It might not help the bites, but she'll appreciate the extra lovin' [​IMG]

    Good luck and keep us posted on how she does. I'll try to find out if you can give her some benadryl and will post again if I find anything.
     
  6. barngem

    barngem Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 19, 2009
    Northern Michigan
    Poor girl hope she pulls through and gets the job done. I think some humans could take a lesson from these hens.

    The will take care of their responsabilities come heck or high water.

    Hugs for her
     
  7. skya328

    skya328 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good news and bad news. Good news is that Mama is doing great! She is all healed up, and never got off those eggs. The bad news is that none of her eggs hatched. I think she just had way to many to sit on and couldn't keep them all warm. Several of them ended up exploding, which is one of the worst things I've ever smelled. [​IMG]

    I do have more good news... I put up another post https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=246771
    about the smell, and what to do about the eggs, etc. Someone suggested getting day olds to put in with her, so I did just that last night!

    Here are the first two pics. The first is on the way home and the second is Mama on the babies. There were no issues whatsoever introducing them to her. Whew! [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2009

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