Hay stuck in hens crop-DIED LAST NIGHT!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by linzanimals, Jan 16, 2009.

  1. linzanimals

    linzanimals New Egg

    Jan 16, 2009
    I am completely heartbroken! My sweet Barred Rock girl was found dead today! I cut open her crop since nothing seemed to make sense..she was young. There was lots of hay in there....this can't be normal right? I think she must've suffocated. [​IMG] I'm upset with myself..I found her hiding last night behind her coop separate from her sister which isn't normal, her mouth was open. I just thought something must've spooked her like maybe one of the cats stressed her out or somethin. I locked them up in the coop as I do every night and thought she'd be fine. I'm so mad at myself for not looking into it further! anyway I have hay in the coop and they eat during the night..which I noticed the peas I gave them last night wasnt in her crop so it was from grazing yesterday, chicken scratch and hay. SO SAD..now my other girl is alone for the first time without her sister! Owners beware!!!
  2. jaybme

    jaybme Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am so sorry for you and your lonely one too.

    Do you have hay in the nesting box? I do- maybe I shouldn't!

  3. granmahen

    granmahen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 11, 2008
    Bakersfield, CA
    Someone at the fair, or maybe on BYC told me to use straw, not hay with chickens, in nest, coop or run. Something about hay swelling up in crop, maybe that's what happened. The only part of hay I give the chickens is the leafy stuff that sifts to the floor where I keep the hay. I have to buy both, cause bunnies have to have hay, not straw. So sorry to hear about your hen, what a way to start the new year.
  4. Portia

    Portia Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 29, 2008
    South Central PA
    I'm so sorry to hear about your loss, it's hard to loose a chicken and I can't imagine if I only had 2 and lost one! [​IMG] If you're in PA I can provide you with another hen.
    I've had a hen with impacted crop. We were able to nurse her back to health, but now she is so susceptible to impacted/sour crop that I watch her constantly. Right now she's brooding a group of 6 chicks.
  5. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 15, 2008
    Hay wouldn't swell up any. Did you give them access to grit? For something like hay or straw they need a very good source of grit. Chickens have been kept on hay and straw for a very long time with no issues so I don't think hay is actually bad for them. I think there is something else going missing like good grit that is occasionally causes this to happen.
  6. WalkingWolf

    WalkingWolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2009
    North Carolina
    Grit would have no impact on the crop, grit does it's job in the gizzard. I don't know if hay swells but it has always been known never feed birds any food dry that swells considerably. Food is always stored in the crop before digestion, when a bird drinks water it absorbs water also. Besides the lack of nutrition feeding ducks bread will kill them from impacted crops. I don't see why it would be any different for chickens.

    I use wood chips but I worry even about that. I use straw in the pen. Though I have never seen the ducks or chickens eat the straw they do peck at the wood shavings. So far I have not had a problem, knock on wood (shavings).
  7. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    Hay and straw actually do pose many more problems with impacted crops than people think. It is one of the main causes of crop impaction. There are some chickens that will leave it alone and not eat it and then there are some that will eat it. It's always the gamble that you take when you choose to house chickens with hay or straw.

    I really hate that this happened and am truly sorry for your loss.
  8. Hattie the Hen

    Hattie the Hen Chillin' With My Peeps

    HI there! When I started keeping chickens years ago I was told NEVER to use or leave hay near them, but straw was fine, along with wood shavings! A lot of books on chcken keeping here in the UK say the same thing. I've kept to this rule over the years and things have been fine. Were you using the hay as bedding,on the floor, or as food? I couldn't make that out from what you wrote. I am so sorry that she died.
  9. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    So sorry to hear about your loss! There have been many birds on here with impacted crops due to hay. And good for you for having the courage to cut her open. Go to BUY/Sell forum and post "hen needed in (your location)" and find her a friend or two! If I had just one bird I would get one from a super healthy flock and skip quarantine, cause she would be awfully lonely.
  10. rays123

    rays123 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 8, 2008
    it may have been the hay bc its just like when a bale is sittin in the rain it swells a little bit, sorry for your lose

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