Dead hen, mucus from beak..

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by MamaBuch, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. MamaBuch

    MamaBuch In the Brooder

    Dec 10, 2013
    Alexandria New Hampshire
    Last night, hubby went to collect eggs but said there was a hen in a trans-like state perching on one leg in the box, so he left her alone. I let them out this morning and the same hen was still in the box but laying and with her head on the ground outside the box. I thought she was dead but pet her neck and she looked at me very lethargically with the only visible sign of illness being mucus leaking from her beak. I grabbed her out and placed her on her side on the floor and she was alive but barely. I tried to give her water and she seemed to be interested but a minute later started flopping around on the ground. I went to grab a box to bring her into the warm house and by the time I went back outside a few minutes later, she was dead.
    We had no reason to think she was sick? Her stomach isn't swollen, comb is fine, no hemorrhaging so we didn't see it coming. The rest of the flock seems ok but we are nervous about eating the eggs and if it's something the other hens or WE can catch. Any clues?

    We are tossing the eggs from the past few days to be safe but we are completely clueless and don't have money to take her to the vet to be inspected.

  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Sorry for your loss. The first time a chicken of yours dies, it is scary not knowing the cause. But chickens die of so many different ailments like heart, liver, and kidney failure, egg yolk peritonitis, crop or gizzard problems, and so many other issues, and unless you noticed her being sick, it was probably just something like a bad heart. I would think your eggs are okay to eat. Just keep an eye out in the coop for any respiratory issues or diarrhea, or other sign of illness.
  3. MamaBuch

    MamaBuch In the Brooder

    Dec 10, 2013
    Alexandria New Hampshire
  4. DWolf

    DWolf In the Brooder

    Mar 30, 2015
    This just happened to me. My lavender amercauna 6 mos old laid her first tiny egg yesterday then acted ill today by the time i was checking her out she up and twisted and died in front of me.
  5. abraga

    abraga Songster

    May 4, 2017
    Abingdon, va
    Might have had something going on with her sour crop or a blockage. Did u by any chance notice her crop seemed to bulge excessively..was full...or seemed like a ballon filled with water? Sometimes when they are having crop issues you will see foamy stuff...or liquid comming from the mouth. If it was a crop issue..the eggs should be fine.
  6. chickendreams24

    chickendreams24 Crowing

    Jul 30, 2015
    Wisconsin, USA
    For those of you who are describing your birds spasming and immediately dieing. Yes chickens can have seizures but what I believe you are actually describing is called the death throes.

    I'm sorry. I know they're horrific to see. Animals in the death throes are often already technically dead it is only electrical impulses(some people say acidity in the blood or other explanations as well. I'm not an expert.) either way they're involuntary muscle spasms that can be incredibly intense. It's horrible to watch and can be seen in any animal to some degree or another, but may also not be present.

    We have seen that often when dieing chickens will not only poop(if there is some close to the end of the intestines)but may if a full crop is present expel liquid from it. If the bird is no longer breathing this could appear as mucous from the mouth if the bird is still breathing this can be inhaled which could bring on more death throes as they aspirate the fluid.

    It sounds to me like she may have died from aspirating fluid. Depending on how low her head was if she had any liquid in her crop it could have run out. Chickens don't have the ability to vomit but if tilted at the wrong angle or jumped on when drinking they can aspirate fluid and suffocate. She may have had something else going on but without other symptoms that would probably be my first guess. I would then give her body a thorough looking over for other signs.

    Regardless my guess is that the eggs are all fine.

    Keep an eye on the rest of your flock in case you do have something but I doubt it.
    abraga likes this.

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