We had a one year old buff just fall dead about a month ago. She was big, healthy, beautiful...nothing obviously wrong. We were really confused and thought about it long and hard but couldn't figure out what happened. Her crop was not swollen, she hadn't choked on anything. She was just laying dead by the water one morning. Fast forward to tonight...a 7 month old buff is sitting on her roost, her wattles and comb are dark purple, her head is tipped back and she is making a horrible sound, desperately trying to get air. We watched her for a few minutes but it was getting worse and worse and we realized she was near death already. I had my son to put her out of her suffering, which was very sad for us, as we love our girls and hate to do that...but again, she was big, healthy and beautiful. No mites, nothing wrong with her vent. We cut open her crop this time, to see...and there was just a tiny bit of food, as if she hadn't eaten much today. I am very perplexed and not sure what to think. Background...they have all had dry pox and gotten over it. They had just a bit of dark spots on the combs. Could this new killer be a wet pox version? How do I know if that is what it is? Nothing else makes sense. They don't convulse, they don't have diarrhea, they don't have yellow mucous or discharge from eyes or mouth...NOTHING! They are gorgeous birds that just fall over dead. We didn't see the first one die but now that I've seen this one dying, I wonder if they had the same thing? And if it's going to slowly kill all of our hens? I would like some advice on how best to diagnose what is wrong...I don't want to lose any more. That was just really, really sad today. I hated that I couldn't help her! Thanks in advance.