Hello Fellow Chicken Fanciers!!

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Hello Fellow Chicken Fanciers!!

Postby Nutmegastar » Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:07 am

Hello Meg here,
Our family decided to get a few free range hens. No one was more surprised then me, when I discovered a fascination for these girls. I'd never suspected myself of being a bird kind of person, but I found I enjoyed sitting on a stump of wood, watching their behaviours, and how they interacted. I began to spend a lot of time creating a lovely environment for them. Non feathered members of the family began to make comments about the change in the 'pecking order' of importance around the place!! Face forward a couple of years - family accept my hen fascination, and also find they enjoy the girls too.
Anyway, I have a problem I'd love some help with. One of my girls, Consuela is a Minorca I believe seems unwell. She's always been a very consistent layer, laying eggs that seems somewhat large for her lean frame. Yesterday morning she spent quite a long time on the nest, when I checked the nest, there was a sort of slime, clear (possibly albumen) and a small amount of thin shell under this. The hay and wood shavings under this was quite moist. Clearly she'd laid a thin shelled egg. All yesterday and now this morning - she seems less bright. She is not eagerly running for the worms I dig for her, this morning she wouldn't eat a small piece of bread I offered. Her comb is slightly more flopped down, and a bit paler then normal, there is a very very slight trail of moister near her vent, more like a snail trail then actual moisture. She has previously lost quite a few tummy feathers - over the last 4 months I'd say - but is has otherwise been happy and well. She is a bit shy and skittish by nature. Her vent is not red at all, or bulging. I hope she is ok - any suggestions on what to do? I may be panicing prematurely - but thought that if there was something I could do to help her, it was better to seek help earlier rather then later. She is free range, but locked up with the other 9 girls at night. She eats Mrs B's mix food, and pellets, and also has diatomaceous earth in her food, as a natural combat for internal parasites. All girls get kitchen scraps as well, they get fresh clean water in containers that are scrubbed out (no detergent) every day. Any help at all or suggestions??? She is definatley quiet and a bit 'off colour'. Any suggestions are gratefully accepted.
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Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 9:52 am

Re: Hello Fellow Chicken Fanciers!!

Postby Marina » Mon Feb 10, 2014 9:47 am

Hi and welcome to PC.

How is your hen today?

It sometimes happens that they lay one or two shell-less eggs and it also happens that they have an off-day - just like us humans - so at the moment I'd just watch her.
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