Chicken dropped dead - warning, necropsy photos included

Emak2323

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Apr 30, 2019
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Massachusetts
This morning I went out to check the chickens/eggs and found one of my girls dead 💔💔 she just laid an egg yesterday and nothing had seemed wrong.

4 days ago I put down another chick that had thrown up and was wheezing, but I believe that was related to her laying eggs internally and having egg peritonitis.

I hadn’t noticed any signs in this chicken of anything wrong. However, she has always been stand-offish. I did a necropsy and it seemed there were lots of fat deposits (on her heart, a big fat flap in her coeminal cavity) and her liver seemed a bit flabby. I’ve never dissected a healthy chicken so it’s difficult to say. Her lungs were also tan in color and looked to have some hemorrhaging. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I am terrified it’s something contagious and I may lose more of my girls.

Warning: graphic content
 

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Rose Quartz

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This morning I went out to check the chickens/eggs and found one of my girls dead 💔💔 she just laid an egg yesterday and nothing had seemed wrong.

4 days ago I put down another chick that had thrown up and was wheezing, but I believe that was related to her laying eggs internally and having egg peritonitis.

I hadn’t noticed any signs in this chicken of anything wrong. However, she has always been stand-offish. I did a necropsy and it seemed there were lots of fat deposits (on her heart, a big fat flap in her coeminal cavity) and her liver seemed a bit flabby. I’ve never dissected a healthy chicken so it’s difficult to say. Her lungs were also tan in color and looked to have some hemorrhaging. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I am terrified it’s something contagious and I may lose more of my girls.

Warning: graphic content
Her heart looks fine. You didn't inculde pictures of her lungs. The liver looks fine - at least in the photos - when it comes to fat. But the dark purple looks like blood clots. It could possibly have been a clotting problem.

Coloration will change significantly based on how long it is after they've died. Liver looks normal color wise to me, unless you saw her die and did the necropsy right away.

With female chickens that amount of fat, and even the coloration is normal.

Do you have any more photos? I know it's hard to take pics when your hands are dirty.

Sorry for your loss. Waking up to dead chickies is never what you expect or want.
 

Eggcessive

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From the tan liver and huge blood clot, plus all the fat, it looks like fatty liver hemorrhagic disease possibly. But there could be more than that going on. Did you see any yellow ascites fluid when you opened the abdomen? Do you know what the whte material is in the last photo? The lungs usually are up in the back and bright pink. If those are lungs, they would appear very abnormal. I am just learning about necropsies. I just lost a hen today with fatty liver, and she had the fat, a large blood clot, but also had ovaian cancer that had spread to other organs. @casportpony do you have any thoughts?
 

Emak2323

Songster
Apr 30, 2019
93
77
102
Massachusetts
Her heart looks fine. You didn't inculde pictures of her lungs. The liver looks fine - at least in the photos - when it comes to fat. But the dark purple looks like blood clots. It could possibly have been a clotting problem.

Coloration will change significantly based on how long it is after they've died. Liver looks normal color wise to me, unless you saw her die and did the necropsy right away.

With female chickens that amount of fat, and even the coloration is normal.

Do you have any more photos? I know it's hard to take pics when your hands are dirty.

Sorry for your loss. Waking up to dead chickies is never what you expect or want.


I thought the tan colored organs were the lungs? I have so many videos, but I tried to screenshot what I thought was the liver (which seemed kind of flubber-y to me) and more of the underside of what I believe are the lungs. She died somewhere between 3-13 hours before the necropsy. Let me know if there’s something more specific I should screenshot.
 

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Emak2323

Songster
Apr 30, 2019
93
77
102
Massachusetts
Thanks. I guess I have just never noticed a normal one before.
Her heart looks fine. You didn't inculde pictures of her lungs. The liver looks fine - at least in the photos - when it comes to fat. But the dark purple looks like blood clots. It could possibly have been a clotting problem.

Coloration will change significantly based on how long it is after they've died. Liver looks normal color wise to me, unless you saw her die and did the necropsy right away.

With female chickens that amount of fat, and even the coloration is normal.

Do you have any more photos? I know it's hard to take pics when your hands are dirty.

Sorry for your loss. Waking up to dead chickies is never what you expect or want.

I posted more photos below (sorry I thought they went through last night but they didn’t), but to add to the context. I broke her sternum backwards, which is why things might look anatomically different and why I think the tan things are her lungs.
 

Rose Quartz

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E8CA152B-7096-44F3-890A-BC6681821B62.png


I made a little diagram thing, the lungs are between the ribs behind the heart. Right up against the chickens back. They're kind of difficult to get out because they're fitted perfectly around the ribs.
chicken.jpg


If there's anything that looks kind of, bubbly textured - Like pancakes with popped bubbles on the surface - or pink in comparison to everything else, that would be the lungs.
 

Emak2323

Songster
Apr 30, 2019
93
77
102
Massachusetts
View attachment 2183151

I made a little diagram thing, the lungs are between the ribs behind the heart. Right up against the chickens back. They're kind of difficult to get out because they're fitted perfectly around the ribs. View attachment 2183159

If there's anything that looks kind of, bubbly textured - Like pancakes with popped bubbles on the surface - or pink in comparison to everything else, that would be the lungs.
Oh really?? Thank you so much! So if that is clotted blood...do you have any theories about what happened? I thought the liver was typically maroon-ish?
 

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Rose Quartz

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Oh really?? Thank you so much! So if that is clotted blood...do you have any theories about what happened? I thought the liver was typically maroon-ish?
With that much blood in the organ cavity, maybe internal bleeding? Not sure what might have caused it though.

The liver is usually maroon-ish, unless it's been sitting for a while.

Around 45 mins after dying it tends to be more brown than red.
 

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