Chicken Died with No Apparent Reason

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by MonTXChickens, Aug 20, 2014.

  1. MonTXChickens

    MonTXChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2014
    Montgomery, TX
    Okay, yesterday afternoon our 6 month old Black Sex Link chicken died in the coop floor. She seemed fine the day before and during the morning. There were no apparent injuries and no signs of anything. She was free to go out into the run or stay inside. There is a lot of venting and a fan blowing the warm air out of the coop. Yesterday was a cooler than usual day with overcast and rain off and on. The other chickens in the same coop and run are fine. What might cause this? We haven't had this before.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2014
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Did you check to see if she might have been egg bound? Was she laying? There are so many things they can die of a that age, anything from heart, liver, or kidney failure, a gizzard blockage, and worms to name a few. A necropsy done by your sate vet may get answers, and sometimes one done at home can find some obvious problems. Sorry for your loss--many of us have lost a young chicken before with no apparent health problems.
     
  3. MonTXChickens

    MonTXChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Montgomery, TX
    Thank you for the response! I do not know if she was egg bound. Some of our chickens have started laying but not all of them. She was already disposed of so I couldn't check her, but in the future, how would I check? It seems so crazy to have one just die, but as I ask around, it doesn't seem unusual. I think we have done a good job keeping the worms at bay but you mention heart and liver and kidney failure. Are problems with these genetic disorders that don't show up until they reach maturity?
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2014
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    You can check for an egg by inserting a finger into the vent 1-2 inches to feel for an egg. Sometimes the egg can be stuck higher up apparently, and might be found with a necropsy. Sometimes infections can bring on some of the organ failures, as well as problems they are born with. Chickens can also have heart attacks as well as pericardial infections. Most people don't have necropsies done by vets at university centers, so a lot of this goes unnoticed by us lay people. I have had seemingly young layers just drop over dead before. Many oldtimers who are used to butchering chickens will do their own necropsies since they know how to recognize abnormal findings.
     
  5. MonTXChickens

    MonTXChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2014
    Montgomery, TX
    Okay. Now I'm stumped! We had another chicken die. I was able to check this one and she was egg bound as I understand it. Is it unrelated bad luck? What could cause 2 chickens a week apart to be egg bound?
     
  6. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    What was she acting like before she died, anything different at all? Egg bound hens usually act like they have a problem, on and off the nest or sitting for a long time trying to pass that egg. Are you sure she was egg bound or did she just die prior to being able to lay her egg? What are the temps in their coop? Do they have a fan blowing where they can stand in the breeze to cool off? Sorry for all the ???'s! Hope you can figure out what's going on.
     
  7. MonTXChickens

    MonTXChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm no expert on the egg bound thing. That is not even something I knew about before I got these chickens and started reading from this forum. This chicken was found dead this morning when we let the chickens out. It was not hot this morning and there was no unusual weather over night. I was gone all day yesterday but they were let out and put away as usual. There is a fan that draws air out of the coop to keep it cooler but not one blowing in. There are two large windows to allow ventilation and the front is very open with wire for predator proofing.I I have done as many of the things suggested on this site as I could . The reason I thought egg bound was because when I was checking her out, I felt around and squeezed the lower abdomen areas. Along with chicken poop, an egg came out with what appeared to me to be the lining. I really have no idea what else to look for right now. It happened when I was gone both times and they appeared to be fine the previous day.
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    It could be very possible that heat stroke could have been your problem. Egg binding can occur with a lack of calcium, from being dehydrated, and from laying too large of an egg. With Texas summers being so hot it is important to have multiple waterers in the shade, have a shallow pan or two of water for them to stand in and cool their legs, along with good ventilation. I also like to add electrolytes to the water on hot days, and not add ACV to water on the hot days since it can reduce calcium metabolism. If you have any more deaths, it might be a good thing to get a necropsy done by your state vet just to make sure their is nothing contagious. Here is a link for that: http://www.tahc.state.tx.us/
     
  9. MonTXChickens

    MonTXChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2014
    Montgomery, TX
    thank you for the suggestions. I have waters out but none they can stand in. I'll try that. One thing that I have noticed, speaking of heat, is that at night a lot of the chickens bunch up on top of the nest boxes rather than using the roosts. I imagine that creates a lot of heat. I wonder how I redirect them into the roosts.
     
  10. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    The roosts need to be higher than the nest boxes, since they tend to go to the highest point to roost. Then add a slant to the top of your nest boxes with cardboard or wood, to prevent them from nesting on top. I use a fan pointed out a window to draw air into my coop.
     

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