Healthy hen drops dead. Autopsy pics. **graphic**

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by theladieskeeper, Aug 9, 2018.

  1. theladieskeeper

    theladieskeeper Chirping

    Oct 15, 2013
    This is a 2nd hen that didn't present any symptoms and was found dead as if scared to death right on the spot. the last one was a buff. this one is a Barred rock. I have a couple questions about the autopsy pics I took if anyone has experience looking at them. I am experienced with chickens and know when chickens aren't doing well, by their behavior and the smell in the coop. My girls are doing even after the heat wave here in cleveland and seem to be putting on weight for the coming winter. No standing around, coughing, feather picking. We have had a red tail flying around and even landed in the pasture but this hen didn't have a mark on her. They eat certified NON gmo no soy feed from an Amish mill in applecreek ohio. i do give scratch every couple days to have them scratch up under the apple trees to get the bugs that winter in the ground then mark up my apples. So on to my questions:
    1. Should there be so many formed egg yolks waiting to ascend and get their shells then laid?
    2. Is the amount of yellow fat in the backside normal?
    3. I did find a couple worms in the intestines, but I haven't de-wormed for winter yet. Not infested.
    4. Is the stuff in the gizzard normal? if so I don't think ill be eating gizzards any longer... :)
    5. What am i looking at in pic 3? the hard black oval thing?
    20180809_110410.jpg 20180809_111242.jpg 20180809_112839.jpg 20180809_113032 (1).jpg 20180809_103003.jpg 20180809_111249.jpg I have many more photos if more are needed. I didn't dissect lungs because i didn't notice any coughing and honestly didn't think about cutting organs open except that fat gizzard..
    Comments welcome
    Cheryle 20180809_110410.jpg 20180809_111242.jpg 20180809_112839.jpg 20180809_113032 (1).jpg
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  2. chickendreams24

    chickendreams24 Crowing

    Jul 30, 2015
    Wisconsin, USA
    KikisGirls and casportpony like this.
  3. theladieskeeper

    theladieskeeper Chirping

    Oct 15, 2013
    Not sure what your post means? Is this a link to something that will answer any of my questions?
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Enabler

    Sep 20, 2015
    Southern N.C. Mountains
    I'm sorry for your loss:hugs

    I am by no means an expert I'm still learning, hopefully @Eggcessive @coach723 and @rebrascora will chime in.
    I'll give you my thoughts. There is a lot of fat, so no, that is not normal. Excess fat can lead to Fatty Liver Disease and make it harder for hens to lay eggs. Some birds can be predisposed to packing on the pounds, but it's always a good idea to evaluate what and how much you feed.

    I looks like she has yolk in the abdomen. She probably was laying internally for at least a while, some of the matter in there looks to have become "congealed" for the lack of a better term. This is what's seen with hens that have eggs/egg yolks deposited into the abdomen.

    The gizzard should not have layer of fat. The contents are probably normal, it looks like it contained ground up foodstuff.

    I don't know what the black "thing" is, hopefully someone will recognize it.

  5. Chicken Whisperers

    Chicken Whisperers Songster

    Jun 29, 2018
    Meridian Idaho
  6. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

  7. theladieskeeper

    theladieskeeper Chirping

    Oct 15, 2013
    Thank you!
    I too was shocked to see those yolks there and thought the yellow fat looked like jellied yolks. Ill take a look at the makeup of their feed and evaluate the kitchen scraps they get. They seem healthy running around all day doing their chix stuff. My egg production has slowed, hopefully they arent all packing their abdomens with yolks...
    Thanks again for your input.
  8. coach723

    coach723 Crowing

    Feb 12, 2015
    North Florida
    I agree, there is too much fat in the abdomen, and around the heart and gizzard. Gizzard looks normal to me, except for the fat around it. Where in the cavity was the black oval thing, and the organ next to it in the picture? Also the red mass in the picture next to the heart? If those are liver, then that is a very diseased liver, looks almost necrotic, but in the first picture there looks like more normal liver in the bottom of picture, so not sure what I'm seeing. :oops: My other thought was lash egg, wish you had cut it open to look. Where it was in the body may provide clues.
    I don't know if it will help, but here are some pictures of normal organs during necropsy, maybe one will help in recognizing what you found based on where it was. necropsy manual 02008.pdf
    Sorry, not much help in this case, but will be watching to see what others think.
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Lots of fat, and I think the black thing is the gall bladder.
  10. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    Is the blob on the left a blood clot?

    Edited to add:
    Do you have pictures of the liver?
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
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