Friday morning hubby rang the vet bright and early and took Bella to see her. It was not such a bad prolapse as Anna had had, but with Bella being a young chicken who laid eggs nearly every day, every time she laid an egg it would all come out again however many times we popped it back in again, and there would be times when we couldn't pop it back very soon as we would be at work. So we felt we had no real choice other than to have Bella put down. As we had had two young chickens with the same problem within a month the vet wanted to do an autopsy to check there was no underlying cause, but she found nothing obvious. Vent pecking was also ruled out as Amber did not have a bloody face. The vet also said we should ring John Pile, the breeder, to let him know that both the Light Sussex chickens we'd bought from him in early February had had prolapses as it could be a genetic fault.
We are also wondering what we might have done wrong, but can't think of anything. Lack of calcium can be sometimes be a cause of prolapse, but they had plenty of oyster grit. We don't think we treated them any differently than our first three chickens.
Obviously we were a bit sad to have lost our beautiful chicken. Bella and Amber seemed to get on well by then, too.
We have been told that chickens don't like being alone and hubby felt he had a bit of time to spare on Friday, as our ten day Easter break was drawing to a close, so we decided to get two new chickens the same day. We went to a more local breeder called Golden Valley Poultry, who seem to have a good reputation and also rear their chickens organically and let them free range.
We chose from these 22 week old pullets and came home with a Black Rock and a Bluebelle. We decided to go for two different breeds this time to reduce the risk of both having a genetic defect.
We quickly learnt that they needed to be kept separate as Amber climbed onto the top of the run we had them in and started to try to attack them, making the end of her comb bleed. As it was fairly sunny we thought it would be OK to let Amber have a run round and get to know the new chooks while they were safe in the run. We were clearly wrong.
|Amber was very interested in the new arrivals|
Obviously we are hoping that we will have these new chickens for a few years.