1. Momof12chickens

    Momof12chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    I have know clue what happen to two of my chickens.? I lost one and have one I am keeping in house. We were thing egg bound but I don't know. This is what my big momma looked like she passed.[​IMG]
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    Then I have my girl sunshine with the same thing the next day. We gave her a bath she layed two eggs then we stiched her up it has been seven days and she is doing great.
    She is eating and drinking. In the house in dog cage. She has layed three eggs. I have been keeping her in the dark so she would not lay but still is. I just would like to know what this is.? Thank you. This is what she looked like.

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  2. chooks4life

    chooks4life Overrun With Chickens

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    Whoa. That is not eggbound at all. You have either a predator or other chickens eating the abdomens of your hens.

    You can see the vent above the injury on both hens; that's the guts that have been torn into, nothing to do with the vent. The degree of damage and look of it makes me believe your other hens are the likeliest culprits. From the look of your first hen she had that injury for at least a day before you found out.

    Normally vent pecking is aimed at the vent but that's just directed at the abdomen itself. The vents are untouched. Poor girls, what a horrible injury.

    I would kill all hens responsible, personally, because this is only permanently stopped by putting an end to lines that carry the trait. Vent pecking, scalping, and all forms of cannibalism are very heritable and do not exist in all lines of chickens. It's a myth that low protein triggers it in any chook. It can trigger it in chooks already carrying the trait but you can starve non cannibal trait carriers to death without them ever resorting to cannibalism.

    Debeaking is another method of handling this, so is using red lights, higher protein feeds, and a few other things... But there are no guarantees as long as you keep lines like this. Boredom can trigger it too. Some hens are obsessive about it. Now they've begun they will keep going. Once they learn where to get protein it can be very hard, even impossible, to retrain them.

    I'm sorry, what a horrible situation. Good luck with it.

    Best wishes.
     
  3. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    That bulge looks like ones I have seen with fatty liver disease maybe? Looks like the other birds pecked away the skin around the bulge?

    -Kathy
     
  4. chooks4life

    chooks4life Overrun With Chickens

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    This is almost certainly cannibalism by the looks of it, and while it's not a happy thought, chances are the hen you're saving now would have participated in causing the death of the first hen.

    If you can spend the time to observe them (as we all must to ensure everything is working out with our husbandry methods) then you should be able to spot which hen is starting it, or which hens.

    It probably begins with feather picking. I'd take a book, my mobile phone, something to drink or eat, a chair, and literally just sit there and watch until I find out who's starting it, even if it takes all day. If you have a camera you can use that instead but there is no substitute for surveillance of the situation, you will need to identify what is happening to stop it. If you want to know what hens cannibalize immediately simply put this hen back in as she is and you will know, but it's a risk and you'd need to intervene quite quickly. I'm not sure I recommend that.

    Otherwise, you may need to sit there for a fair while until they become bored of you and resort to their normal behaviors, but there's a chance they may not do that with you around. It's possible that if you remove the instigator, maybe the rest won't instigate; maybe all they do is join in at the sight of blood.

    I culled against feather picking back when I first got chooks because I believed it to be a precursor to cannibalism and nothing I've seen since has convinced me otherwise. Not all feather pickers will turn cannibal but it's a risk and not a healthy behavior in the first place and I want no social diseases and abnormal mentalities in my flock. Since culling against mild apparent precursors to cannibalism, I can leave injured, ill, even bleeding hens and chicks among the flock and cannibalism does not occur, and neither does bullying. It really is that simple to remove from your flock. Just don't breed the animals that show those behaviors.

    You may be able to trim all their beaks without debeaking, personally I think debeaking is of course inhumane but also unnecessary. They grow a see-through edge to their upper beaks which is much like your fingernails; it doesn't hurt to cut that see through bit off, but it does stop them using that necessary edge to break into eggs --- or flesh. They will still preen, drink, eat etc normally without it. I would trim all their beaks just in case while reintroducing this hen when she's healed, but, while it will stop them busting into eggs and immediately drawing blood for a while, they could still peck their way into other chooks' guts if dedicated enough, for example if they're the sort of hen that knows what the end goal is and doesn't need to see blood to begin with to incite them. In that case the blunter beaks will be somewhat sore from slamming them harder than normal into flesh to try to gain entry, but, it may not stop them, and the beaks' edges will of course grow back within a few weeks.

    Normal nail clippers for human fingernails work fine for it. Only the top beak needs doing. I think it's a safe bet you will have more and more cases like this until every hen is like this unless you stamp it out asap.

    Best wishes.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2015
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    The hens that get that bulge tend to lose the feathers on it, which of course make it look like a big, pink target. I have a couple of them, but none have been pecked at.

    -Kathy
     
  6. Momof12chickens

    Momof12chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    Kathy
    I don't know but I check them all the time and my one that passed layed
    Such big eggs that I could not fit them in egg cartoon. Why dose that happen.
    Is it something that I am doing wrong. The girl I have in the house is doing
    Great healing up very nice. I will not be putting her back out until she gets her
    Feathers. Thank you for your Help.
    Momof12 chickens.
     
  7. Momof12chickens

    Momof12chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    Thank you for your help we are thinking of putting a camera in the coop to see what is going on.
    My girl that is in the house is doing great.
     
  8. Momof12chickens

    Momof12chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    I am in the coop all the time I worry about them so go out at least 4 to 5 times. I have never seen them go after each other.
    I will be watching them to see if that is the problem. I know it is hard this time of year. They get board and they will only go
    In the run and not out in the yard. So how do you keep them from being board.? I will keep you informed on what happens.
    Thank you.
     
  9. Momof12chickens

    Momof12chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    What is fatty liver disease.? How and what am I doing wrong. I treat them so good and love having them. Both of them were only
    10 months old. So gold you respond to me. I have read many of your responses to other post. Thank you Kathy
     
  10. chooks4life

    chooks4life Overrun With Chickens

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