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Lost 2 hens in 8 days - necropsy !!GRAPHIC PICS!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by TexGardenGirl, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. TexGardenGirl

    TexGardenGirl Songster

    Feb 2, 2009
    northeast of Dallas
    8 days ago I found a hen dead on the floor of the coop first thing in the morning. No signs of injury, though her comb was slightly bloody (figured it could have been the others pecking curiously or just the ants who were already going to work on her.) She hadn't been acting sick or strange, and since she was right by the door, we figured maybe she just flew off the roost and into the door and head injury killed her. We didn't necropsy (though I did inspect her thoroughly externally). The coop is secure, I checked all the vulnerable spots to make sure nothing could have gotten in.
    Well this morning another hen was lying dead on the floor under the roosts. Same thing - slightly bloody comb but no other injuries. This one had quite a bit of poo on her vent feathers (the first one a very slight amount just on the skin) which the ants were working on. I decided to necropsy this one. This is only my 2nd necropsy, though we've processed several roosters and I always inspect them just so I know what's normal. (Plus I'm a former vet tech and have seen a few on cats, dogs and small mammals.)
    Internally looks pretty normal to me - any thoughts? The only thing that looks strange is the mouth/nasal cavity - seems to have some cheesy ick going on. They've shown no respiratory signs, and there was no external nasal discharge and eyes looked normal. (They pant alot lately, but it's 108 outside!)
    I wondered if maybe even a mild sinus infection would be enough to kill them with the added heat stress.
    Anyway, here's the pix -


    close-up of the ceca - they seemed a little gassy, as did the intestines, but maybe that was a post-mortem thing?

    Liver - maybe a little pale and a few spots? It seemed normal to me at the time or I'd have gotten better photos, this is it.


    There were a couple eggs in the tract - here's one higher up at the yolk phase

    and one almost ready to lay - it had a nice strong membrane but no shell. I squeezed it out and it was cool to see how the oviduct bulges out to deliver the egg nice and clean.

    And the mouth, where I suspect the problem is.

    Any ideas are welcome. I hope it's not something that is likely to affect the whole flock, but if it is I'd like to know what I can do for them.

  2. robin416

    robin416 Songster

    Feb 6, 2007
    That looks like it could be canker.

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