Lethargic silkie bantam

Question

Lethargic Silkie Bantam: One of my 6 month old Silky bantam chicken's has become very lethargic.

She lays in her nesting box with her head down and feathers ruffled.

She doesn't move even when I approach her or nudge her.

When I take her out into the yard with the other chicken, she will walk around normally but I will find her curled up in her nesting box soon after.

I have also noticed some very large hard poos in their coup. I can't guarantee they are from her but at other times her poo seems normal.

I am still finding eggs under her in the mornings. Do you have any advice?

Answer
Sounds like she is broody, meaning her body is in a cycle of wanting to sit on and hatch eggs. When hens set they don’t like to foul the nest with droppings, so droppings build up inside and can be unusually large by the time they get off the nest and poo.

A good broody hen will freeze when approached on her nest. This is a survival mechanism that would minimize her visibility to a predator.

It’s her pre-programmed job to keep those eggs warm and safe. Some broody hens go into a trance as they set.

Imagine being stuck in one place for the better part of 3 weeks, not eating or drinking much or getting exercise.

I think this shut down is almost like a bear hibernating and surviving off reserves with minimal energy out put. I could be wrong, but this is what it sounds like to me.

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Great advice
by: Anonymous

Thanks you so much for your advice, it makes alot of sense and has eased alot of my worry!

Much appreciated.

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Baby Silkie

by: Anonymous

I have a silkie doing the same, but she is only 4 months old.

It started this morning and she has been very lazy all day. She doesn't even want to walk around. We have tried to give her water but she won't drink.

It is not as hot out today as it has been in the past couple of weeks. Is she too young to be brooding? She has not layed an egg yet.

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