HELP! 3 birds dead

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by nurschic, Sep 29, 2016.

  1. nurschic

    nurschic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 10, 2014
    Over the past week I have had 3 hens die. I did a necropsy on all 3 and there were no common findings...

    Bird one…large blood clot in abdomen and VERY Fatty, large breasts, no signs if worms.

    Bird two….found alive in nesting box and looking like she wanted to lay an egg….poop all down her butt. Passed by the next morning. Necropsy didn't find anything unusual.

    Bird three… Found laying in yard, no injuries, she had just layer down. NO BREAST could be felt, crop full, she smelled like poo yet none on her. Ate and drank without problems, dead by morning. Necropsy intestines were SUPER bloated and filled with food, it looked the same as what was in her crop and her gizzard. No digestion looked to have taken place. No signs of worms, gizzard full and crop had food in it.

    Only change that has been made in teh past 2 weeks is that they have been getting whole oats and whole barley. Could this be the problem?????

    Im totally stumped!!! Help me PLEASE!!! Cant stand to lose anymore birds.
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Flock Master Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    You really should send in a fresh refrigerated body to your state vet for a necropsy. Losing that many within a week is suggestive of an infectious disease. What type of barley are you feeding--whole grain or pearled? My chickens generally will not eat whole oats if I give them scratch grains for a treat. I would probably feed them only a balanced layer feed if they are of laying age. Barley is easier digested when soaked and sprouted, while rolled oats are taken better. Did you look inside the gizzards to see if there was any blockage? Here is some info on feeds:

    Here is some infor on getting a necropsy:
  3. nurschic

    nurschic Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 10, 2014
    Didnt see a blockage. Her intestines were full of grass, seeds, and other stuff was going through just not digested.
  4. Little Fuzzy

    Little Fuzzy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2016
    I have made my own scatch with whole oats, barley, red wheat, Boss,and some other seed that I can't think of at the moment. I also fed cracked corn during winter. I give them about 1 1/2 cups at night for nine chickens without ever having a problem. This is a treat not a main food. Obviously change their diet immediately and how old are they?
  5. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Chicken Obsessed

    Hi, although you seem cool and collected, I am sure this has been very difficult. [​IMG] And you obviously have more processing experience than me... I will get there though.

    @Eggcessive gave good advice. What you are inspecting is with limited knowledge and mostly visual. The pro's will be running labs as well as probably looking at microscopic stuff which is not visible to the naked eye, even worm eggs. Cost is usually affordable to none since it is in the interest of protecting the public. Also not sure if you were able to inspect things like the kidneys, lungs, and heart?

    Maybe one of your new grains has mold that you can't see. Many molds are VERY toxic.

    What kind of symptoms did you see with any of the birds? What is their age and their main source of nutrition? What breed, and how many total do you have?

    Any more birds you have are currently in grave danger! Even though I don't have the answers, this is a learning experience for me and I will be following along to see your outcome. You have already experienced great loss, I'm hoping better for your near future! [​IMG]

    ETA: the limited knowledge comment was not in ugliness but compared to someone with an animal science degree or something. Sometimes people get touchy or defensive and it was not intended in that manner. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016
  6. I am sorry, but yes,the whole oats and barley are killing your birds...Put them back on pre-made feed....Either all flock raiser or Layer pellets and oyster shell provided.....I mix Flock grower and layer for my birds with oyster shell and grit available at all times..

    Check out the Chicken Chick....A great read on birds dying with the symptoms you have mentioned.....

    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016
  7. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Chicken Obsessed

    @nurschic I thought the oats and barley were in addition to their regular feed, not the MAIN feed?
  8. Yes....It very might be an addition to the feed?
    I wont get into how I know....I just know what I know.......Anyways...

    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016
  9. EggSighted4Life

    EggSighted4Life Chicken Obsessed

    We all learn some how. [​IMG]

    That's why I am trying to pay attention to everything I can. [​IMG] Thank you to all who are sharing their learning experiences with me even when painful! [​IMG]

    There are still many things I haven't yet experienced in regards to chicken keeping... good and bad.

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