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Help - Sick chicken can not raise her head

Posted by billiej (My Page) on
Sun, Jun 20, 10 at 5:12

Three weeks ago I got 4 2 year old hens given and bought 4 point of lay birds. I have no previous experience with chickens, but tried to do the right thing for them. They have free range during the day in an acre garden and plenty supply of layers pellets and handful of corn and salad as a treat at tea time.

Friday evening the bird was fine and healthy, I was weeding and she was eating all the bugs and things as I was turning soil over.

Yesterday morning I found her on the perch unable to lift her head. I have looked for advice on the internet and I think it it crookneck but not sure if it could be new castles decease or poison?

She is very lethargic does not want to move around, sleeping nearly all the time and shows no real interest in food. I bought some nutri drops yesterday after she has had them she is a little better for a while but not enough to eat anything and I have managed to get her to take water by dropping water onto her beak.

Should I be filling her crop? and if so how do I do that!
How do I tell the difference between newcastles decease, crookneck and poisoning?

Any help greatly appreciated, this is a very sweet little bird, were there is life there is hope and I hope we can get her to pull through.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help - Sick chicken can not raise her head

The Poultry Site has a page listing all kinds of diseases and disorders of poultry. Good descriptions of symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, prevention. For pictures of different disease symptoms to help narrow down a diagnosis, I use the images tab at Google.

MSU also has a good disease description page at

As for your hen; you won't be able to fill her crop. If she can't lift her head, she's probably not able to digest food anyway. I'd stick with the molasses (or nutri drench) and dribbling water for her until you can figure out what it is and how (if) you can it.

Good luck with her.

Here is a link that might be useful: Poultry Site Disease Guide

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