Found second hen dead in coop

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lilbirdee, Jan 27, 2010.

  1. lilbirdee

    lilbirdee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2009
    Ridgefield, WA
    Found my second hen dead on the floor of the coop this morning. The first one was a month ago.
    The first one had been acting a bit under the weather but this one showed no signs at all.
    Both were about 9 months old. The first a Light Brahma, this last one a sweet Cochin.
    I have 13 other hens and 1 rooster and everyone else seems normal. Nothing has changed lately. Same food etc. I have had decreased egg production this last month due to some of them molting but this Cochin didn't appear to be molting.
    One odd thing is that she never really did lay eggs. She laid a teeny tiny round one on Dec 1st. Smaller than a small walnut. I think that this was her first. And then her second was about a month later, also very tiny. Never saw another one after that.
    So maybe she had something wrong with her.
    It just makes me wonder was it just a coincidence to have my only 2 deaths so far be in the same month?
    Or is it just normal for chickens to die for no apparent reason?
  2. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    Every chicken dies for a reason but it can be tricky to know why.
    It might be genetic, but I'd check the feed, take a whiff, check for moisture and mold and change if needed.
    Any bad smells in the coop? Any injuries no matter how small on the bodies? Were crops and vents normal?
    Also, it would not hurt your entire flock to have vitamins in their water for a week or two- either baby vitamins (no added iron) or poultry vitamins.

    I'm very sorry- you must be upset...
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2010
  3. possumqueen

    possumqueen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 17, 2009
    Monroe, North Carolina
    Before you lose another bird find out where your state agriculture or state poultry lab is located, and call them and talk about a necropsy for tests.

    Then, when you find a bird "under the weather" submit that bird to the lab. They'll euthanize it and run a necropsy and look at blood and tissue samples. It's amazing what you can learn, and it will save you a lot of problems down the road.
  4. bluetrain

    bluetrain Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 23, 2009
    Western NC
    Dang......if I didnt know better you posted exactly the same thing I have.....about 1 hen every 3 weeks since just before Christmas.....I thought maybe it was the breed.....White Plymouth Rocks....they are big....the 1 rooster and the 5 hens we have left....
  5. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    Sounds like it was likely a problem with her egg machinery (like internal layer), if she never got it operating properly. If so, probably nothing you could do about it. Can I ask what their diet is? If you are really brave, or know someone who is, you could cut her open and take a look, you might be able to determine the cause.
  6. bluetrain

    bluetrain Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 23, 2009
    Western NC
    Well for my issues, I discovered what was going on. We had Cornish X Rocks and they were living out their intended life span (apparently). After a discussion with my friendly feed store person, I described the monster birds, where we got them and what was happening. The whole year long experience has been a learning adventure but not discouraging. That is why in a different post I was asking about egg producers and am on track to re-building our little flock and knowing what we are getting this time. You have to do to learn and I look forward to learning more about our feathered friends.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by