dead bird

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by lteamchickens, Mar 15, 2015.

  1. lteamchickens

    lteamchickens New Egg

    Mar 15, 2015
    Our hen, who was about 1 year old died suddenly without any sign of distress. She had broken her leg months ago and that healed fine. She was always the weakest chicken.we are wondering 1) why? (I saw the posts about sudden chicken deaths)
    and 2) is it safe to eat her? We loved her, but don't want to see the meat go to watse. Any help would be great
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2015
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Flock Master Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.

    Without doing a necropsy (or paying to have one done), you may never know why she died. Now having said that, I personally would not eat a chicken that died of unknown causes. Is it safe? Probably. Would cooking the meat kill any possible infection or illness? Most likely. I just can't make myself do it. If you want to feel like she's not gone to waste, maybe plant her under a tree or favorite rose bush or something so she can fertilize it for you.
  3. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Chicken Obsessed

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    It is not considered healthy to cook a bird that you find dead. Upon dying, the body begins decaying almost immediately. That is why when you cull a bird, one cleans out the entrails immediately and chills and washes the bird.

    I would suspect heart problems, weakness tends to cue that. I would not pay for a necropsy unless I had a couple more birds die within the week.

    Mrs K
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I'm with the above. I'm not near hungry enough to eat a bird I find dead. Use her for fertilizer and she won't go to waste.
  5. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Flock Master Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    I agree - it's the only way I can think of, though, if someone really wanted to know why their bird died unexpectedly. I just bury them and move on. I've never had several mysterious deaths in a short period of time.
  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place True BYC Addict

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    I would have to be starving to eat a bird found dead! The best plan is either to have a PM done, or to wet the body to chill it fast, wrap it in plastic, and refrigerate it for up to a week. If more birds die, you then will be more motivated to have them examined to find the cause. Often a bird will die with little advanced warning, because they are so motivated to appear healthy at all costs. Acting sick is a bad idea if you are a bird! Sorry for your loss, and Welcome! Mary

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