I just read that shade is especially important for dark-colored chickens on hot days, because they get hotter than white birds. Do you think it is likely a 17-month-old Barred Rock could die from heat stroke in 98 degree temperatures, if she wasn't in the deep shade that she was accustomed to seeking shelter in on very hot days? I am just sick and believe this must be what happened to her. If I hadn't left on vacation that super hot day or had just let her out of the coop, she would probably not have died. But I was afraid to let her out when I wasn't around. I believe now this was my fatal mistake: I found out some more details from my neighbor who was watching her. She died inside the run, not out under the ladder as I had mistakenly thought. It was 98 degrees F that day. That shouldn't be too hot for a hen, but I always let them out to go into the deep shade under the woodpile on very hot days above 95 F. I had thought it wouldn't be too safe to let her out of the run while I was away because my neighbor is gone a lot, and I feared dogs and other predators. She had easy access to fresh water and watermelon that hot day, after all, since it was in the run with her, but but my run doesn't have the deep, dark shade of the woodpile. I'll bet that's what did her in. The neighbor saw her at 5 p.m. with her right leg extended and her head down over it. He thought she was taking a dust bath but found her in the same position the next morning, dead. I have seen that position before when they are too hot, and I have been able, on those occasions, to coax them into the shade and they have recovered. I feel so guilty for going on the vacation. Had I been home, I'm sure she'd be alive. Nasty heat! She may well have had an underlying condition, but I think she could have lived on with it quite a bit longer, if I had been able to get her into the deep shade of the woodpile on that hot day. I would like to hear from others who have lost Barred Rocks of this age to heat stroke. I can't believe I was so stupid. I didn't think it was going to get quite that hot that day.