rhode island hen, dont know what to do

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by LordUria, Aug 20, 2014.

  1. LordUria

    LordUria Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 20, 2014
    I have this gorgeous Rhode island hen that I have raised from a chick, but lately something's been bothering me.
    when I go out to check on my chickens she always has her beak wide open and im not sure if it's the heat or something else. I love in Summerville sc, and lately there have been a string of temps in the mid to high 90s for a few weeks. My family is on a tight budget as it is so all I could afford was to put our old desk fan in the coop to try and keep the air circulating. Is there anything I can do, anything to look out for.
    they always have fresh clean water every day and their run is mostly shaded by vines and a huge creeping juniper tree.
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    I find that putting shallow pans of water so they can step into it to cool their feet helps. Adding ice in the afternoons or changing the water at that time of the day helps to keep thing cool. Some chickens will pant like that not matter what. Different breeds handle weather better than others, and my overweight hens do the worst. Maybe letting them out of the run to range where they can get under trees might help. In the afternoons mine all congregate under 3 pine trees in my yard. They have also been good predator protection from hawks.
     
  3. Free as a Bird

    Free as a Bird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could definitely be the heat. Is she holding her wings out? Leaving doors/windows/vents open during the day could help with ventilation (if they have screens). Cool water might help as well.
     
  4. LordUria

    LordUria Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 20, 2014
    The chickens dont like going out of there run past noon. I let them out in the morning then they all come back in and refuse to move in the afternoon. I've started growing more shading trees around the run for extra shade. Thanks for the advice
     
  5. pinkaliboo

    pinkaliboo Out Of The Brooder

    I live in the high desert and my girls were panting with their beaks open also. I freeze water in plastic containers overnight and in the morning and afternoon I put the ice in a pan with water so it is cold. They immediately run over and drink it and I have 1 that likes to stand in the pan when they are done. I change it out a few times a day. I also spent $20.00 and put a string of misters in their run. I only put it on during the hottest part of the day but it drops the temperature at least 10 degrees when it is on. They didn't like the water mist hitting them on the first day and would run under the coop but by the 2nd day they love it. Before I installed the mister I would wet down the sand in their run really good a few times a day and that helped also. They like to hunker down in the damp sand and cool off.
     
  6. Sarevan

    Sarevan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    White Swan, WA
    Our chickens had us really concerned when they were panting in the heat. On very hot days I go out early in the morning wet down the holes they dug for bathing, put out shallow containers with water, spray area around run to help cool it off, give them cold water several times a day, gallon jugs frozen for them to rest against. We also give them treats that make them take in more water, cantaloupe, watermelon, zucchini, all are from the garden and usually scraps or some that are bruised.

    When spraying down area they have even started to play in the water spray. Early evening we take them out of the run and take them around the yard for bug hunts and let them cool off outside of the coop and run. Too many predators to allow free ranging on their own. I try to keep the stress down when very hot no handling unless It is needed. Keep other animals away from run don't want them moving anymore than they have to.

    Keep an eye on your chickens watch for the stress, or sign of illness. The heat has been horrible I hope that is all it is trying to cope with the high temperatures.
     

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