Can't tell if my hen has EYP


6 Years
May 6, 2013
My lovely 18 month old RIR, Philly, stopped laying a few weeks ago when she started a moderate molt. Yesterday, she made some not good noises, and when I went out to check on her, she had laid what looks like a lash egg. It looked like cooked flesh, was not symmetrical (kind of kidney-shaped) and had a tube-like piece attached. The whole thing was about the size of a regular egg. It was reddish brown on one half and cream colored on the other. When I poked it, yolk came out.

As for other symptoms, here is what is confusing. She has a perfect comb, bright eyes, no yolk on the vent, the vent looks normal and her tail is upright. She is behaving normally, including eating and drinking. She does have a squishy abdomen, which is what concerns me. Does this sound like EYP?
I don't think you would know for sure unless you did a necropsy on her after she died, but it is a pretty good guess that she is definitely an internal layer. If her abdomen gets very full, she may have ascites or fluid collecting, and it might help to with draw the fluid periodically with a needle and large syringe.
I have good news to report: I took Philly to the vet yesterday. I am lucky to be close by a longtime avian specialist, so we were in good hands. Philly was confirmed to (most likely) be an internal egg layer, and was starting to look sickly at that point. She was treated with antibiotics and kept overnight. By the morning, her squishy abdomen was smaller, so they didn't drain any fluid. She was given a hormone implant to keep her from laying eggs for the next 6-9 months. At that point, if she begins to lay normally again, then all is good. If not, we will repeat the process. She's home now, scratching in the dirt with her friends.

I know this is a lot of work/$ for a chicken (DH is in the background making comments about so-called "cheap" eggs ) but just wanted to let people know that this condition can be managed if you can find a vet who knows about implants and you have a budget manager willing to fund the process :)
I have read on BYC about others who have done the implant. Unfortunately many don't have access to avian vets. Glad she is doing better.
Phillie's story just gets more interesting. We figured once her hormone implant wore off, we would have to decide whether we wanted to shell out the money every 6-9 months for another one for the next few years. Last week, I noticed Phillie's comb was getting redder and bigger and I figured decision time had come. Then, over the next few days, I collected a few normal-looking eggs from her. I was so surprised, because I thought her situation was eventually terminal. Maybe the half-year off from laying was what her little chicken system needed for healing. Our Ameraucana, who was also laying funky-ish looking eggs in the fall, has resumed normal egg-laying too after her winter hiatus. I will update later on after Phillie has a few more months under her belt.
Well, this is more than a "few months" and more like a year, but I want to post an update, so that people who might have an egg-bound hen can see there is hope for a good outcome! Phillie is still doing very well. She (and all our other hens) took a couple months off from laying in the winter. They've been laying again for a couple of weeks now, and Phillie's eggs are still perfect. She seems to have made a full recovery. :)

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