Thirty years and now a mystery!

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by LindenHill, Jan 4, 2013.

  1. LindenHill

    LindenHill New Egg

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    I have been keeping chickens, rare, heritage, and standard breeds for over thirty years. I have seen a few diseases and unusual occurences. I do have a mystery at hand, in the last two months I have lost six hens to broken legs. Has anyone else had a problem with a 'reoccurent' breaking leg issue. It began with an older hen and has ended with two of my slightly over a year old girls...I have looked over their area and cannot figure out how this is happening. Does anyone have any ideas. They are in an enclosed run, approximately 40 X 40 in the front of the hen house and 30 x 10 in the back....I just don't know...the end result, after a wasting away, is death.
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    [​IMG] Welcome to BYC, sorry for the circumstances. I haven't a clue as to what is going on. Are you providing an adequate source of clacium either in the layer feed or as oyster shell? The only thing that comes to mind is calcium depletion.
     
  3. LindenHill

    LindenHill New Egg

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    Well, yes, I do provide crushed oyster shell and sterilized ground egg shell....the leg issue is from something else...a fall...or some type of a struggle...I just can't tell what they are doing to fall or what they are struggling to get away from....??? I have approximately 100 hens and four or five roosters.. could the roosters be bothering the hens...should I remove some????
     
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Roosters gang breeding hens can be a problem, but I have never heard of it causing broken legs.
     
  5. LindenHill

    LindenHill New Egg

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    Thank you...what do you know about chicken's with "bags" under their eyes? I have a chick that I discovered this evening who suddenly cannot walk and who has bags under her eyes. I fear I am dealing with an "issue" that I have not come across....
     
  6. SD Bird Lady

    SD Bird Lady Chillin' With My Peeps

    are they broken or weakened legs?? I have heard similar accounts from people dealing with marek's
     
  7. LindenHill

    LindenHill New Egg

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    No...the legs are suddenly broken...I am in the coop in the morning and then again in the evening....it is one leg that is broken and usually is sticking out a little, away from the 'hip'....I just don't know...it such a mystery and sad...as the hens that this is happening to are healthy before the leg break and of course I lose a great laying hen each time...ugh. I will have to watch the roosters on the weekend...perhaps the Broody Magician is correct and the roosters are causing this...could be stew.
     
  8. bargain

    bargain Love God, Hubby & farm Premium Member

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    Unless you have an unusually high roost and hens are constantly falling off and breaking legs, I cannot imagine your set up causing this. I have heard that owls will sit next to a bird, push it from the roost and then attack, but since you didn't mention predators , I'm going to suggest you look at issues that might be physiological from disease or deficiency. It might be
    [FONT=Arial, Arial, Helvetica]VIRAL TENOSYNOVITIS"A reovirus infection causing damage and swelling of the tendons of the legs. Can cause leg weakness in broilers that have swollen shanks and hocks and frequently ruptured tendons. This results in poor growth and increased FCR. Disease frequently associated with other infections. Vaccines are available in some countries. No effective treatment. Adenoviruses have also been isolated from affected birds.[/FONT]" It might also be rickets​


    [FONT=Arial, Arial, Helvetica]RICKETS [/FONT]​


    [FONT=Arial, Arial, Helvetica]Softening of the bones of young birds. The correct levels of calcium, phosphorus and vitamin D in the ration should prevent this disease which is now uncommon. (Sometimes feed companies don't have the correct ratio in the bins and this can happen. [/FONT]

    AND NOW, I just learned from researching for you that birds get osteoporosis! that's news to me. http://www.poultryscience.org/ps/paperpdfs/00/ps001033.pdf Although a lot of this article seems to infer that the heavier the layer (more prolific) the greater the opportunity for this crippling disease. Hope this helps and good luck!

     
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  9. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    that is sounding like possible rooster damage. I was picturing broken lower legs. Two or three large roosters trying to breed the same hen can very well cause pelvic injuries and popped hip joints. Try separating out your roosters and see if things improve.
     
  10. willowbranchfarm

    willowbranchfarm Chicken Boots

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    Maybe as sourland said its rooter damage.

    Welcome to BYC :)
     

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