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Unknown illness in Barred Plymouth Rock Hen - Looked like frostbite?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by rzimmerer, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. rzimmerer

    rzimmerer Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 16, 2012
    Hello,
    I have a flock of 35 Barred Plymouth Rock hens (and 1 rooster). They are in their first year and live in a pasture/mobile house structure for the summer and pasture/indoor coop for the winter. I had (she ended up dying) a hen who I noticed was sitting by herself in the nest box once the sun had set. Usually all my birds roost together so I thought it was odd but decided to not disturb her because everyone was already settling in for the night. The next day I noticed her crown (not sure if that is the right word - red part on top of head) looked oozy, raw, and there was a bit of blood as well. I have an automatic door and thought she maybe had gotten stuck outside one night and gotten frostbite though the temperatures hadn't droped below 50. I also thought maybe she had been fighting with another bird but it was just her crown that was injured and no one was bothering her any of the times I was observing. Anyway, I put neosporin on the inflamed part and put her in the "sick bay" just in case the other birds were stressing her out. She was breathing heavy and I checked her vent but there was no blockage or oozing - everything looked clean. Also, for most of the summer she had a couple of discoloured back feathers - looked like they had been bleached though I don't know if that had anything to do with it. So, sadly, she ended up dying that nigth but I thought if anyone has seen this before and knows about what was going on with my bird I can possibly save any others that get sick in the future.
    Thanks for your help!
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    The word you were looking for is comb.

    She may well have gotten picked on by others in the flock for spending her time in the nest. This sometimes happens. It is also important to remember that whenever one of the flock demonstrates weakness or frailty, others in the flock are not tender, they often show no compassion, but rather can be somewhat brutal in weeding out the weaker members.

    You did well to separate her. See what the next few days bring. It is too soon to speculate. For certain, however. No frostbite is involved. Not with those temperatures.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2012
  3. rzimmerer

    rzimmerer Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 16, 2012
    Thanks for replying so promptly! Unfortunately ( mentioned above) she ended up dying - which made me think there was more going on than what I could tell. About brooding - there are a number of my hens that like to spend all laying hours in a favorite nest box. I have 12 nest boxes so there is never over-crowding. Thanks for the consideration though!
     

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