Mystery Blood in Coop

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by GRB73, Dec 12, 2018.

  1. GRB73

    GRB73 Songster

    Mar 10, 2016
    This morning we found blood splotches on the floor of the coop and a few drips down the side of the walls. It is a small, plastic coop, with light-colored walls, so the blood was pretty prominent. We inspected our three girls this morning and found no injuries, no blood on their feathers (my bright-white chicken was spotless). Their poop and behaviors are completely normal.

    I'm wondering if they may have chased a mouse or bird into the coop, trapped and eaten it? I didn't find any bones/feathers/fur etc. My question is, would I see any remains or do chickens eat the entire animal??? I have seen my one girl eat an entire baby bird in one gulp (I'm still trying to unsee it), but it was pretty small.

    I can't find any other explanation for the blood. Maybe someone else has experienced this? We've had our hens for 3 years and never found anything like this before.
  2. townchicks

    townchicks Free Ranging

    Dec 1, 2016
    Contra Costa county, Ca.
    It's possible they got a mouse or a rat. I had rat traps in a shed, and once found a sprung trap with nothing in it, but a pool of blood in the outline of a rat body. I assume that one got caught and other rats consumed it on the spot.
    Another possibility, if your girls are molting, is that one of them broke a blood feather, and it dripped on the floor before clotting. The affected hen may have cleaned up her own feathers. This has happened with my cockatiel and also my doves.
  3. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Yes. The case of the missing victim.

    Examine each comb for fresh pecking wounds where chickens love to grab an enemy. Fresh peck wounds are bright red spots.

    Also examine feet for a broken nail. A chicken will hop down just the wrong way from a perch and land the wrong way on a toe nail. Look for a missing nail or a hang nail. You will need to cut off a hanging nail or it may continue to bleed and it's painful for the chicken.

    Both comb injuries and toe nail injuries can bleed far more than the injury warrants.
  4. Shadow Source

    Shadow Source Songster

    May 25, 2018
    Central Oregon
    Could have chased a mouse, but one of their combs may have got cut. If you see a black spot on their comb, that might be your answer. All it is, is dried up blood. Do you have a rooster? Everything should be okay if this is just a one time incident. In my flock my young cockerels are starting to breed, and they grab the hens comb when they do it, then the hen screams, and all of my older roosters come and rescue the hen. It can also be cause by a curios, or aggressive hen just pecking another hen until her comb bleeds. Never the less if you do not see new blood tomorrow, it will probably be okay. :)
  5. Relleoms

    Relleoms Songster

    Jan 22, 2018
    I’ve had a hen barely knick her comb and it looked like a mass murder had taken place. There was blood everywhere! Maybe that’s what happened in your coop?
    aart, townchicks, Chickassan and 3 others like this.
  6. Capoken

    Capoken In the Brooder

    Aug 10, 2018
    Connecticut, USA
    We just had the same thing happen last night. It was one of their combs - it had gotten dried and cracked in this cold dry weather (just like my knuckles!) We slathered some petroleum jelly on it.
    townchicks, Chickassan and azygous like this.
  7. GRB73

    GRB73 Songster

    Mar 10, 2016
    My RIR does have a scab on her comb that I didn't notice yesterday. Maybe she was pecked by our moody Wyandotte!
    Shadow Source, Relleoms, aart and 4 others like this.
  8. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    Check feet bottoms too! Last mystery blood here was a wierd bumble that popped on its own.:)
    azygous and townchicks like this.
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    There ya go!
    Have had that happen numerous times......the blood spatter/drops/smears is alarming but it's usually not as bad as it looks.
  10. trudyg

    trudyg Songster

    Jun 3, 2013
    North Alabama
    I've had that, too, and it's usually a comb that got injured. Apparent that it was a comb because of the blood smears on the feeders.

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