Rooster dead in 36 hours..


Aug 16, 2017
So 2 days ago I was feeding my chickens. Everyone was fine and the next day I noticed my rooster going into the hay loft (20 ft up) to roost and I heard a very loud smack noise. I assume he hit something on his way up or from landing.

The next day (yesterday 16th) I noticed him limping and eating with the hens. He avoided complete pressure on his left leg, but was still getting around with it.
Came home from work later that night to find him laying in front of the barn door in the wind. (Where I am it's snowy and was 25F last night).. he was laying in the dirt alone. I brought in in the house away from my 3.5 week old chicks and put him in another room in a large box.

He drank some water (and gatorade) cause I didn't have electrolyte or mineral water at that time. He didn't eat. He was very quite and as the night continued he was more lethargic. He wouldn't walk or stand. Only on one foot he could grip my fingers when I pressed them on his foot. He was very weak and I noticed he had lice also. His comb was red, but seemed slightly faded compared to wattle and his comb was hot to touch. He also pooped liquid, but I've read chickens will do that to cool off.. my house is around 70F compared to 25F outside.

I did 2 am.. go to the barn and sprinkled Red Lake DE (it is food & feed safe) around and patted a few hens I could reach.
I noticed this am he was still weak. And he had congestion that you could see dripping out of his mouth when he lowered his head. He also had a mucus in it. My rooster died this morning just after 11am. What killed him and so quickly?? All other hens are ok seeming and acting within normal behaviors.

Feed is cracked corn, free range, meal worms, and I gave them some wheat bread on the 16th.

I feel like he could have had a few issues. He was an 8 month old Australorp rooster I raised as a chick.
I gave them layer feed on top of the cracked corn and they free range. They all ate some wheat bread that am also.
So sorry for your loss.

My take on what you wrote in your original post is that what started the spiral was the loud smack noise. I don't think that food was the issue.

To me, you mentioned the loud smack noise, later he is limping, then progressing to fluid and congestion, along with a hot comb (has me thinking fever), and finally passing away. If I had to put together my best guess - just from what you described - I would almost tend to think that he got a possible puncture wound during the collision. That type of wound might not have had a lot of blood with it, and could be hard to see through all his feathers. But, a puncture wound could have caused an infection, and it sure sounds like the progression he went through, his body was fighting off a severe infection, or possible damage to a major organ(s) from the collision? I'm not in the medical field, so I don't know if you can get infections from a blunt force trauma without an external wound of some sort, but by what you have described, it just really sounds like an infection, or a sizable amount of internal bleeding. Just putting that out there as a possibility, and what came to my mind when reading your post. Again, sorry for your loss.
It’s always hard to pinpont a cause of death. It could have ben an injury, or possible Mareks disease. He may have been getting sick, and had the fall if he was having problems with his leg.

The only way to know for sure is to refrigerate his body in a plastic bag, and contact hour state vet or poultry lab early Monday. They can instruct how to ship his body on ice packs in a foam cooler. They can look for different illnesses and do testing for Mareks if they think it might be that. Sorry for your loss.
Thank you. I was am very upset and now my girls are without a rooster. I feel like he definitely had a fever, but I've never had a sick bird ever. It also happened so fast too. I was going to buy Tylan 50mg for him. Unfortunately he passed before I could give it to him.

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