Help dead chickens!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by countrybear47, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. countrybear47

    countrybear47 In the Brooder

    Apr 16, 2010
    Eaton Colorado
    We have lost two hens in the last week and don't know why. The only noticeable symptom was one of the hens was very lethargic for a couple of days before she died. The other showed no symptoms. Should we be concerned about the safety of the eggs from the remaining flock? We sell eggs to other teachers at our school should we stop selling eggs? The hens are in a coop and chicken run until around 3 or 4 then they are released to free range. We have only had the flock since May and have not wormed them. The hens are a mix of Americauna, Barred Rock, Buff Orps, and a white hen. One of the dead hens was a barred rock the other was an Americauna they both were to be about 1.5yrs old when we purchased them. They are fed a layer crumble and hen scratch as well as fresh produce scraps from our garden. They have been eating a lot of grasshoppers lately because they have been especially bad this year. Bedding is a combination of wood shavings and straw.

    We are fairly new to having chickens and we want to do the right thing.

    How often should we clean the coop, the nest boxes, and such. We have about 50 birds. I have had birds in the past but it has been 20+ years ago and I never had these types of problems. Also we think they have mites. Does DE do a good job on the mites?

    We are worried about the eggs and selling them to our friends. We dont want to just throw them out but wont want to take any risk either.

    Thank you,


  2. oldchickenlady

    oldchickenlady Songster

    May 9, 2010
    Cabot, AR
    I've read here that DE is a preventative, not a cure for mites. Some people dust them with Seven dust to get rid of the mites. I haven't had an issue with mites yet. How big is your run/coop? Are all 50 birds in it together or do you have them separated into different coop/runs? How hot is it? Is there enough shade? Do they have fresh water available at all times? Heat stress could have killed them, but it could have been something else, too. What was the chickens body condition when they died? Were the feathers in good condition (shiny and well feathered) or did they look kind of frazzled/drab/pecked? Were they a good weight or skinny? If they were skinny with bedraggled/ragged/dull looking feathers it could have been something that they had for a while. If they were in good condition it could have been something that killed them quickly. I am sorry I have no real answers, just more questions...As for the eggs, I really dont know the right thing to do. I would say that if your other hens are healthy and doing well, it should be ok. But, since you sell them, you might want to wait a week and see if you have anymore losses, just to be safe. The eggs will keep, and if you have no more deaths you could still sell them, or just boil them and feed them back to the chickens. Definitely treat them for mites and maybe put some vitamins and/or electrolytes in their water. I have also heard that organic apple cider vinegar is good to put in their water, helps their digestive tract? (can't remember exactly why it's good for them, I think a tablespoon per gallon? I would research the amount, not sure that is right either). Hope you have no more losses!
  3. Shared Acres

    Shared Acres Songster

    Aug 10, 2008
    Northeast Fla
    You can use the DE around and in the coop to help keep down problems, but I heard it's useless if it gets wet.

    I'm wondering if they have worms. YOu might want to try worming with WAZINE first and then about 10 days later give them Ivermectin.

    If they have lice, then you could sprinkle Sevin dust on them.

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