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Help, lost a hen last night and not sure why.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by nittanyxi, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. nittanyxi

    nittanyxi Songster

    Apr 24, 2010
    one of my 8mo old hens was just laying dead in the coop this morning. I have 21 total. 5 bantam and 16 standard.
    I have no idea why she died. not predator related as the coop is secure and they don't free range.
    It was one of the standard breeds. she had 5 toes and looked like an australorp/faverolla mix. fully feathered, not being picked on. biggest bird in the flock. hadn't started laying yet. she looked fine yesterday and didnt' show any signs of being ill. It was very cold the last couple of nights but all the other birds look well.

    Any ideas on what could have went wrong?
    Still think it's ok to eat the eggs from the other hens?

  2. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    sometimes it just happens. heart or something. Take a good look at your flock for any sign of illness, but I assume that you have. It just happens sometimes. Now, if you lose two more, you better do some more investigation, checking for a poison? or maybe your coop is not as tight as you think, although most predators take their hen, except mink, and they will kill most of the flock.

  3. nittanyxi

    nittanyxi Songster

    Apr 24, 2010
    thanks for the reply. It definitly wasn't a predator. mice can't even get in. There were no marks at all on the hen and no feather loss. I don't think any of the other hens in the coop even pecked at her. other than the fact that she is dead she looks perfectly healthy. fully feathered and filled out.
  4. PatS

    PatS Songster

    Mar 28, 2009
    Northern Califonia
    The same thing happened to me last year. All the chickens were bright-eyed and bushy-tailed when they went to bed and then a dead chicken in the morning. I think she broke her neck, maybe she got jostled on the perch and flew into a wall. Or she could have had a heart attack. We buried her because we couldn't be sure. I'd feel very confident about the eggs being fine at this point.
  5. mirsy09

    mirsy09 In the Brooder

    Jan 3, 2011
    White Rock, BC
    [​IMG]I had the same thing about a few weeks ago. She was frisky and eating the day before. Certainly I didn't notice anything. Mine can't free range as I have dachshunds and they would like nothing finer than to chase them. Besides, I grow all my veggies and they would be in my garden all the time. They have a nice big run and I close them into their coop every nite. She was just laying in the corner when I opened the coop in the morning. I even had to take a close look as I couldn't believe it. She was pretty young and hadn't even started laying eggs yet. It grossed me out as I was by myself and had to remove her... I could hardly do that. I do know that birds are very perishable. The gal where I buy my chicks told me "sometimes these things just happen". All the other girls are all fine..... who knows??? But it is awful and makes me feel so sad.
    But one of the female chicks turned out to be a rooster and I took him back and they gave me 2 new girls. I even wondered if he killed her? I will never know.

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