For a few days I haven't been able to find her eggs and had started writing a little story for my grandchildren about Sally tricking me by laying her eggs in yet another new place and had taken photos for the story.
Sally was able to free range during the day so sometimes I felt silly when I would follow her on tippy toe trying to find her latest nest and hope that she wouldn't see me. First she laid her eggs in her coop. Then we found eggs under the lemon grass bush.
All of a sudden I found an empty nest under the bush and after a few days realised she was laying her eggs elsewhere. So once again I did the tippy toe procedure and saw her go in amongst the cliveas which were growing underneath the camellia tree. I couldn't even imagine how she could get in there as it was really hard to access but she managed it and for a few weeks the neighbours would have wondered what on earth I was doing when they saw my bottom in the air as I struggled to get under the tree and through the cliveas to pick up her eggs...mumbling all the time I might add!
So I really didn't take too much notice when I hadn't found any eggs there since Monday but did take notice when I went to let her out of her coop yesterday and she didn't fly out as she normally did but was obviously having difficulty getting out which was quite odd and out of character. Then she wouldn't eat and just stood in one spot for quite a while which I found very worrying. I asked the CEO if he knew what was wrong and he wondered if she had worms. I had read a little about chooks being egg bound and how dangerous it was but really didn't twig at that stage that she may have had that problem.
I had to go out in the morning and when I came home she had rallied and I was relieved when she started following me around the garden and scoffing down worms when I lifted up a pot plant which had become our routine the last couple of days. However, when it came time for her to go into her coop for the night she did something she has never done before and she went to her nest under the camellia tree as it got dark. I knew then that something was seriously wrong.
I wondered if she had something wrong internally as she had produced this strange egg a few months ago and did a little reading about the symptoms of an egg bound chook on a few sites including Egg Binding in Hens on Backyard Chickens and she did have a couple of those symptoms but not all. The CEO picked her up after dark and put her in her coop and this morning I hoped that all would be well once again and she would fly out as usual when I let her out.
Unfortunately she didn't make it till the morning and I felt so very sad that we had lost her.
I know she was just a chook but she used to follow me around the yard like a little puppy. The other chooks used to peck her when they were let out and wouldn't let her join them so I felt a little sorry for her even though I realised she could quite possibly have done the same thing to them and I didn't know how she would ever be able to integrate with them until the CEO got the 'I will do it one day' bigger chicken coop built. My grandchildren don't know at this stage but I will still finish off the story I started writing for them as I fondly remember the fun Sally brought into my daily life...even if she was just a chook. I can't believe I got so attached. I think I need to get a life....or a dog!
If you have had an egg bound hen I would really like to know what symptoms yours had if you wouldn't mind sharing. Were you able to save yours?