Chicken 'sudden death' - Very sad & shocked, anyone any ideas as to cause please ?


6 Years
Nov 25, 2015
Leicestershire, England
Had been away on a really enjoyable much needed holiday (UK) and went to collect our 'flock' from where they board, this time 13 nights, one of the owners went off to fetch all ours but returned saying he had some bad news - one of ours (Maisie) had died in the nestbox, was lying on her side and with a cracked egg lying there behind her vent as if she'd died laying it, was still warm and rigour hadn't set in ??
She'd been running around the day before and was also still alive that morning when they were checked for food and water etc.
Maisie was an 18 month old 'Buff Sussex' - a large, big boned very friendly, very active bird with no known health issues and having finished her first broody session about a month previous.
So it was VERY sudden, no warning, has anyone any ideas as to what it could have been please ??

Maisie 1.jpg
- hopefully nothing contagious ?
Without a necropsy, it's very hard to say what may have happened. There could have been a heart problem, being a large bird it could have been a liver issue. There are many possibilities. Less likely that it was contagious if there were no obvious symptoms before hand, but necropsy is the best way to know for sure. I don't know what kind of resources for necropsy you have there, but that would give you answers.

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