Chicken died while brooding.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by theadvocate19, Dec 21, 2013.

  1. theadvocate19

    theadvocate19 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, my entire family's favorite hen has died two days ago. The poor sweet thing died of apparent starvation while she was sitting on a clutch of eggs. She had made it to day 5, and apparently died sometime in the mid morning. She had constant access to fresh water and food, but it appeared she wasn't eating at all. It's very much heartbreaking and we really just want to know what exactly may have caused her death and what it is we could do differently. It's just devastating, she really was the world's sweetest chicken ever and we're all a little crushed...

    Thanks.
     
  2. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm very sorry to hear about your loss. Was she showing any kinds of illness before she started brooding? Was her comb pale or purple? Was she eating normally before she went broody? I can't imagine she would just refuse to get off her nest at all and starve herself. I know they sometimes go a day or two without getting off but normally they get off once a day to eat, drink and relieve themself.
     
  3. granny hatchet

    granny hatchet Tastes like chicken Premium Member

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    i have family in brooksville/ spring hill border. my grandmother sometimes had to throw her hens off the nest so they would eat, they would go back. but it really surprizes me that a hen would do that. i think it may be some other cause.what kind of hen was it?
     
  4. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

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    I'm so very sorry for your loss. Were you able to save the eggs by putting them in a incubator? Perhaps she had a illness you were unaware of before she began sitting? Sometimes chickens can be very good at hiding illnesses. I can't imagine she would starve herself unless she had something else going on that you were not aware of. Again I'm very sorry for your loss..
     
  5. theadvocate19

    theadvocate19 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No she wasn't showing any signs of illness, that we could see. We have had others get ill, that we've had to nurse back and she wasn't showing any of those signs beforehand. Our Stormy was the sweetest chicken in the world! We miss her so much. She always had a pink comb before, so I don't think it was paler? And yes she appeared to be of good health before, eating, drinking, freeranging regularly. I really can't say she starved to death, truthfully we don't know, and have already given her a proper burial. She was getting off the nest briefly the first few days, then appeared to just outright stop getting up off the nest. It appeared she stopped eating, and I can't help to feel guilty.

    Haha that's funny! We used to live in Indiana too (Plainfield). And our sweet Stormy is the one in my profile picture. A silver laced bantam cochin. We got her and a brother and sister from a local feed store who purchased from Ideal Poultry. The sister got picked up by a hawk, the brother; our dominant rooster.




    Thank you all so so so much for the sympathy, not even going to lie, we are devastated. Trying to explain to your co-workers, they don't really seem to get it, 'they are just chickens after all'... sadly, she got off the eggs prior to dying. She was discovered deceased at approximately 12pm, when the first person gets home to let them out. At that point, they were already cold and we don't have an incubator, so they were buried with her in a fresh layer of pine shavings in an appropriate cardboard box. After she was buried, we planted fresh flowers overtop her grave, graced with an appropriate headstone.

    Thanks again to all for the help, we truly are at a loss.
     
  6. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Sorry for your loss. I've had to physically pull a broody Light Brahma off the nest after setting for 2 days. I put her out in the pen where the feed and water was located in order for her to eat and drink. She was broody during the hot summer which made it a daily chore. I was fortunate that she DID eat and drink while out in the pen, she also deficated very large feces, then made a beeline straight to the nest inside the coop. It sounds like Stormy mightve been dehydrated which can cause organ damage, and will kill a bird quicker than starving.
     
  7. theadvocate19

    theadvocate19 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh!!!! Dehydration was something we never even thought of. Gosh that very well may have been the cause of her demise. And again, we are the fools.

    I suppose the old adage rings true again, hindsight is 20/20. Knowing what we know now, I guess the only logical thing to do is to force a hen to drink/eat while brooding? Gosh, still can't help but feel guilty. Truly does break your heart.
     
  8. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You normally shouldn't need to force a hen to eat or drink while she is broody. It is very rare for a hen to not get off to eat or drink and starve or dehydrate themselves.
     
  9. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Actually broody hens can and do die of starvation/dehydration. It can be dangerous to leave a hen broody(unless she is hatching eggs,in this case monitor her)they can become malnourished as they sometimes will not leave nest. The desire to hatch chicks in broody hens is very strong and overrides everything else,that is why you must keep an eye on them for their own safety and pull them off nest if needed. I personally have pulled my broody silkies off nest to ensure they eat and drink,i actually stand there and watch them.
     
  10. luvmypets

    luvmypets Chillin' With My Peeps

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    As I read this it sounds like something else was going on, it doesn't seem right that she died on day five. Most broodys body system shuts down, not completely, but enough to keep them fed and hydrated until their eggs hatch. I am truly puzzled.
     
    rebrascora likes this.

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