Lethargic Hen- Reoccurring Illness Monthly? What's Wrong?


In the Brooder
Sep 7, 2018
You said that adding a chicken brought in a respiratory disease. MG is a common one, and the bacteria from it can affect many areas of the body, including the reproductive organs, in the synoviae form which affects the joints, and the respiratory system and air sacs which cNspread anything to all organs of the body.
Any way to know if that’s what she has? I’ve also thought maybe IB? Thoughts on treatment?


Feb 23, 2018
I put out oyster shells every now and then, but not consistently. I have some now and could put some out.
Yeah, you should have the oyster shell out at all times if they are laying they need it, without it it can cause them to lay softshell eggs and that can cause them to get infections internally.

Wyorp Rock

Premium Feather Member
Sep 20, 2015
Southern N.C. Mountains
I’m not quite sure what she had before, but when she was introduced to my flock along with another pullet she got ill. It was respiratory she was wheezy/gurgling and a mix of a bunch of treatments did the trick. She recovered with Tylan and a worming of safeguard and copper sulphate in her drinking water that time. I also used a humidifier and ozone. The copper sulphate is what finally kicked her over the end to recovery I think?
If it is a reproductive issue and she is randomly having issues passing an egg (also last time this happened I checked if she was egg bound and she wasn’t)...what do you think it may be and any recommendations for treatment or how to minimize her pain in the future?
Any way to know if that’s what she has? I’ve also thought maybe IB? Thoughts on treatment?
The only way to know for sure what respiratory illness you have in your flock would be to have some testing done. You can send samples to an independent lab or ask your state lab how to test. (links below)

Since it seems the respiratory illness was introduced a few years ago and you are still seeing symptoms, likely MG (Mycoplasma) would be a good guess. MG makes birds and all exposed carriers and it's one that would spread to newbies like you mention.
As mentioned, respiratory diseases also affect the reproductive system, so this may be what's happening to your lady. EYP or Salpingitis are a possibility for sure - the only way to really know more is if you lose her and either send the body for necropsy or do your own at home.

Sadly, with reproductive disorders a bird can seem to feel better for periods of time. Managing symptoms and offering supportive is often all you can do. If there's fluid drain it, antibiotics may help with inflammation, checking to make sure the crop is emptying and keeping internal and external parasites under control, etc. are all supportive measures you can take, but if there is material or matter accumulating in the abdomen, over time it will take it's tole.


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