Very skinny dead hen

mycindysfarm

Chirping
Jan 14, 2017
52
29
64
New Jersey
Hi. I had a hen die and she was very, very skinny. I did an autopsy and didn't find any worms. I had another hen standing around and she was really skinny too. I moved her away from the others and hand feed her for a few days. But she died. Now I have a 3rd hen who is sleeping on the floor tonight , I didn't see any signs she was sick until tonight. She is also very skinny. I gave her Wazine for worms as I don't know what else to do. Could my whole flock have worms? No one else seems sick at all. And the other didn't seem sick until they died. Could it be coccidious. (Don't think I spelled that right) Thanks for any insight.
 

gtaus

Crowing
Mar 29, 2019
1,567
5,196
377
Northern Minnesota
My Coop
My Coop
I don't know what you are dealing with, but I will be following this thread to see what others have to say.

Until you get some real advice, I would suggest you check the basics like food and water and making sure the coop/run are clean. I have food and water available 24/7 for my girls as I suspect some of the girls lower in the pecking order might not get enough food if I tried to ration their feed. Also, I think it's a good idea to separate any suspected sick chickens from the healthy flock and maybe stop the sickness from spreading.

Here is a very good BYC article on Coccidiosis & How To Treat It. Might want to read that to see if any symptoms apply in your flock.
 

ChickenCanoe

Crossing the Road
Nov 23, 2010
28,988
18,185
867
St. Louis, MO
Who did you have do your necropsy?
This is the New Jersey poultry diagnostic lab.
New Jersey Department of Agriculture, Division of Animal Health
Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratory,
NJPHEAL 3 Schwarzkopf Drive
Ewing, New Jersey 08628
Phone: 609-406-6999

Coccidiosis is very unlikely in a mature bird that grew up on the same property because it would have long ago developed resistance to the species present there.
 

Shezadandy

Crowing
Sep 26, 2015
1,663
1,894
307
Portland OR
Always deworm the whole flock. If one has worms, they all do. Also - remember you have to retreat after a number of weeks (check the label) in order to kill the next lifecycle.

If these are older hens, it could be they're falling to EYP (egg yolk peritonitis) or another reproductive problem, i.e cancer, internal laying etc.

Whatever else you do:

Check several of your birds AT NIGHT, in the dark (with a headlamp/flashlight) for mites. They crawl into small areas during the day then crawl out onto the roosts at night and feast on chickens. You'll find them on chickens during the daytime too, but night time is best to get a full assessment. Look around the vent, under the wings- if you don't have great vision, have someone come over and look with you. I hope it isn't mites, but here's what to look for.

https://the-chicken-chick.com/poultry-lice-and-mites-identification/
 

mycindysfarm

Chirping
Jan 14, 2017
52
29
64
New Jersey
I did have mites in the summer but I power washed down the entire inside of the coop and removed and washed all roosting bars. I haven't seen any in a while but I'm going to check the girls vents and look tonight if any come out.
 

EggSighted4Life

Free Ranging
Apr 9, 2016
12,077
14,977
712
California's Redwood Coast
I gave her Wazine for worms as I don't know what else to do. Could my whole flock have worms? No one else seems sick at all. And the other didn't seem sick until they died. Could it be coccidious.
Sorry for your loss. :hugs

How old was the hen and what breed? What do you feed on a regular basis including treats and supplements?

You really should never worm an already ill bird if you haven't seen worms in droppings or gotten a fecal float to confirm need as giving poison to an already ill bird could send them over the edge. Also I agree it was not likely coccidiosis. Checking crop function before she passed might have given some clues. Some birds will be "wasting" becoming skinny for no apparent reason as a side effect of Marek's. Were your birds vaccinated against that?

What else did you check on your necropsy? Good job being brave and trying to find something yourself! Worms is really the least of concerns. What was the heart and liver like, was there any clear or yellow fluid in the abdominal cavity? Were there any tumors in the reproductive track?

Reposting contact info for your state lab... when multiple deaths or symptomatic birds present getting a professional necropsy will give far more answers as they break out their microscopes and already know what looks normal and what is suspicious...
This is the New Jersey poultry diagnostic lab.
New Jersey Department of Agriculture, Division of Animal Health
Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratory,
NJPHEAL 3 Schwarzkopf Drive
Ewing, New Jersey 08628
Phone: 609-406-6999
Lot's of folks deal with lice, mites, and worms... very rarely will they be the cause of death in grown hen. So it's good to always check and deal with if you need to, but that would not be where I personally would be focusing to find cause of death.

What kind of setup do you have? How many birds total? Your weather must be cold now, how's your ventilation? How long have been keeping birds, in this same set up?

Answering some of these questions will help to hone in the possible issue. :fl
 

mycindysfarm

Chirping
Jan 14, 2017
52
29
64
New Jersey
I have about 40 hens. 15 have been around a while and 25 are about 1 year old. The younger ones did have the Marek's and Coccidiosis vaccinations. I had chickens for about 5 years now. I have 2 houses about 10 x 10 each with windows and fans for ventilation. The ones that died were not from the same house. They all free range in together. There are plenty of food sources all around. If this one dies I will contact NJ poultry diagnostic lab. She was walking around today so maybe she will be ok. So sad and frustrating. I did check her vent and didn't see any mites. I'm going to run out now and see if there are any on the roosts.
 

Acre4Me

Crowing
Nov 12, 2017
3,220
6,670
497
Western Ohio
Could they have been bullied away from food and water? I’ve had that happen, and remedied it by putting out more food stations. But you have many birds, so am guessing you have multiple stations already for each coop.

Wild birds bringing in a virus/illness is a possibility.

impacted crop? We had a BJG have a crop issue. Looked terrible, lost weight, really looked and acted on the verge of death. She even separated herself from the flock. We tried a few things but nothing seemed to help. Finally something worked and she perked up and has been gaining weight.

glad there are no mites or worms. At least you’ve eliminated a few things.

check out Poultry DVM website. They have some info-graphics relating to illnesses. Maybe have other more detailed resources, but I’ve not been in their site for awhile.
 
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