Sudden Death

CBorden77

Chirping
Sep 8, 2019
31
143
79
Lincoln County, Montana
I just got home (after dark) and went to check on my girls. I always do a head count before locking them
up for the night. I realized one was missing so I opened up
the coop and found one of my girls dead. There were no signs or symptoms at all. She was active, eating well, foraging with the others, etc earlier today (just four hours ago) But when I found her, there were no bites or signs of stress. There was a LITTLE bit of mucous oozing out of her mouth. We have had cooler nights and wetter weather so I have been closing all the windows at night, and have been careful to get any damp looking hay out of the run. What did I miss? Are my remaining girls in danger?
 

SurferchickinSB

Free Ranging
Feb 23, 2018
2,820
4,330
512
California
I just got home (after dark) and went to check on my girls. I always do a head count before locking them
up for the night. I realized one was missing so I opened up
the coop and found one of my girls dead. There were no signs or symptoms at all. She was active, eating well, foraging with the others, etc earlier today (just four hours ago) But when I found her, there were no bites or signs of stress. There was a LITTLE bit of mucous oozing out of her mouth. We have had cooler nights and wetter weather so I have been closing all the windows at night, and have been careful to get any damp looking hay out of the run. What did I miss? Are my remaining girls in danger?
The same thing happened to one of my chickens a few weeks ago. I saw her three hours before and she was fine, when I got home three hours later, she was dead in the coop. I had my vet send her in to get a necropsy and I am still waiting for the results
 

Wyorp Rock

🐓 ❤ 🐛
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Sep 20, 2015
38,307
54,368
1,332
Southern N.C. Mountains
We have had cooler nights and wetter weather so I have been closing all the windows at night, and have been careful to get any damp looking hay out of the run. What did I miss? Are my remaining girls in danger?

I'm sorry for your loss:hugs
Glad you were able to send the other one for testing to see what is happening.

This is sort of separate, but you mention you have been closing windows at night - do you have ventilation in the coop overnight? While in cold weather you do want wind protection and to prevent drafts from being on your girls, you do want plenty of ventilation to move ammonia up and out of your coop. A closed tight coop is an invitation for respiratory problems.
 

CBorden77

Chirping
Sep 8, 2019
31
143
79
Lincoln County, Montana
I'm sorry for your loss:hugs
Glad you were able to send the other one for testing to see what is happening.

This is sort of separate, but you mention you have been closing windows at night - do you have ventilation in the coop overnight? While in cold weather you do want wind protection and to prevent drafts from being on your girls, you do want plenty of ventilation to move ammonia up and out of your coop. A closed tight coop is an invitation for respiratory problems.
Yes, there are vents up high near the eaves of the coop to allow for that.
 

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