I just lost a hen and don't know why

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Fanny's Mom, Oct 22, 2010.

  1. Fanny's Mom

    Fanny's Mom Out Of The Brooder

    36
    0
    32
    Jan 2, 2008
    I've seen no sign of trouble in any of my flock. Early ast evening this one hen was under the coop while everyone else had roosted for the night. I shooed her into the coop and she had no trouble getting up the ramp and into the coop to join her cohorts. I thought the fact that she was alone under the coop was strange, but I checked her out and she appeared to be okay. . .alert and perky. Today when I brought some goodies to the girls, she didn't come out to the fiesta. I found her in the coop, dead.

    What illness has no symptoms? Should I worry about my other girls? I can't send her to the lab; I've already disposed of her. If there's a problem, does anyone know anyone in NC who could come to my chicken yard and appraise the situation to see if there are any signs of trouble?

    As always when one of my flock dies, I feel guilty. [​IMG]
     
  2. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

    4,617
    20
    264
    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    It is rare that there are no symptoms but if you have a lot of birds it can be hard to tell who is eating and who is not and whose poop is whose. I watch mine like hawks and pick up early on any subtleties but it's easy because there are only 2. Any changes in activity level, eating, pooping, egg laying, comb color can mean trouble. On the other hand,sometimes a sad thing happens without warning, like a heart attack. I had a hen - sweet Annie - who loved life so, and was utterly joyous. Boom - just like that - a heart attack took her. It was heartbreaking.

    So sorry about your hen [​IMG]
    JJ
     
  3. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

    5,411
    19
    251
    Jun 17, 2009
    Oklahoma
    My Coop
    There are some things that you can watch for. Comb color, check their eyes to see if they are clear and free from any discharge. Ammonia in the coop can also cause some resp. problems, check for mites around the eyes and vents. They like moist places. Now, I believe it's the red mite that you can only see at night time. They hide during the day and then get on the birds at night. So, you could easily miss those if you do not check at night.

    What are you feeding them? You can boost their protein with Gamebird Feed, but if they are laying, then you need to add oyster shell. But, mine will not eat the oyster shell.
     
  4. LesGan

    LesGan Chillin' With My Peeps

    132
    0
    129
    Mar 24, 2008
    Columbiana, Alabama
    Elite Silkies: How do you get enough calcium into a hen who will not eat oyster shell? I have one like that and she lays soft shelled eggs. Would like to change that situation. Thanks.
     
  5. mamabigbird

    mamabigbird Chillin' With My Peeps

    760
    20
    143
    Feb 11, 2010
    Vancouver Island, B.C.,
    Fanny's Mom :

    I've seen no sign of trouble in any of my flock. Early ast evening this one hen was under the coop while everyone else had roosted for the night. I shooed her into the coop and she had no trouble getting up the ramp and into the coop to join her cohorts. I thought the fact that she was alone under the coop was strange, but I checked her out and she appeared to be okay. . .alert and perky. Today when I brought some goodies to the girls, she didn't come out to the fiesta. I found her in the coop, dead.

    What illness has no symptoms? Should I worry about my other girls? I can't send her to the lab; I've already disposed of her. If there's a problem, does anyone know anyone in NC who could come to my chicken yard and appraise the situation to see if there are any signs of trouble?

    As always when one of my flock dies, I feel guilty. [​IMG]

    Was your hen a sex-link bird? I had red sex-links that would seem fine one day and then just die overnight. They were only about 2 1/2 or 3 years old. I have read on BYC that sex-links are prone to cancers and that they are quite short lived.
    I am sorry for your loss. It's never easy to lose one of our pet chickens.​
     
  6. Hollywood Chickens

    Hollywood Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Florida
    I have a flow chart for sudden death, if you give me your email address I can send it and maybe it will help you figure it out.
     
  7. Hollywood Chickens

    Hollywood Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Florida
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2010
  8. Fanny's Mom

    Fanny's Mom Out Of The Brooder

    36
    0
    32
    Jan 2, 2008
    mamabigbird! I think you hit on it! Yes, she was a red sex link that I got about a year and a half ago. I have another, but so far so good with her. Thanks for the info. I think I'm going back to barred rocks from here on in.
    Hollywood Chickens, when I try to go to the flow chart your brother posted, it takes me to a Google page that asks me to sign in. I don't have a "sign in" with Google and don't know how to get there!
     
  9. Fanny's Mom

    Fanny's Mom Out Of The Brooder

    36
    0
    32
    Jan 2, 2008
    Oh, and Hollywood Chickens, I love your new goat! I'm jealous. . .maybe someday. . . Good luck with her!
     
  10. Hollywood Chickens

    Hollywood Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 12, 2009
    Florida
    Sorry about that, I will have to tell him it didn't work.

    email me at [email protected] and I will send it to you.

    I love my goats they are very different from chickens and require more care, but they are more affectionate.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by