Is this an infection? (photos)

May 2, 2018
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This hen was broody for two weeks before I finally pulled her off the eggs yesterday to break her of it (changed my mind on wanting more chicks). Since then, she's been walking around in a daze and standing in awkward spots for long periods of time. Not acting like a normal chicken, but not acting broody either.

At first I thought maybe she was depressed because I won't let her sit on any more eggs, but I started becoming more concerned earlier when I tossed some scratch out and all the other chickens started pecking at it but her.

I brought her inside, checked for mites (none), checked her crop (small, soft and squishy), looked her over for any injuries (nope) and confirmed her skin color looked normal (yes). I gave her some bread, which she ate, and was about to take her back out when I noticed her ears.

Please take a look at the picture and let me know what you think. Do I have an infection on my hands? If it's an infection, how should I treat it? And if it looks normal to you, then is it possible she's just readjusting after being broody for so long?

She isn't sneezy or off balance or anything, just stands around a bit lethargic, seemingly in a fog.
 

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dennisma1

Crowing
13 Years
Dec 29, 2008
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What's the weather like where you are? Do you think she might just be weak from being broody? It does seem odd...I've got one broody buff O that is constantly broody but she usually seems agitated if I keep off nest...not weak. It can't hurt to shove her in a cage for a few days to be sure she is eating and drinking . Do you have some antibiotics? In my experience a sick chicken will hide being sick and antibiotics won't hurt.
 
May 2, 2018
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Just updating this on the off chance anyone else runs into something similar. I think my hen was either depressed (is that even a thing with chicks?) or just needed some heavy duty broody recovery time. She didn't eat or play for a couple days after I broke her from being broody, but the day after I posted this she was back to her old self. She had been broody for weeks and I was quite abrupt with how I broke her of it, so I think next time I will try some alternate tactics.
 
May 2, 2018
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I was going to say, her ears look fine to me.

Have you heard of the broody trance?

I always assumed the broody trance happened only while they were sitting on the eggs (or at least in a nesting box), but maybe that trance just lingered for her while trying to mingle with the others! It was like I had a little zombie hen on my hands for a couple days.
 

Chicalina

Crowing
Aug 1, 2020
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UK
I always assumed the broody trance happened only while they were sitting on the eggs (or at least in a nesting box), but maybe that trance just lingered for her while trying to mingle with the others! It was like I had a little zombie hen on my hands for a couple days.
Ha! When I'm trying to break a broody by lifting her off the nest every day, she will squawk a bit but when I set her down outside, she will sit on the ground as if she is still on the eggs, like a total zombie. It usually only lasts a few minutes before she realises, oh yeah, food!

Glad your little hen is doing good now.
 

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