Fatal rooster attack


A 76-year-old woman was attacked by a domestic rooster on her rural property while collecting eggs. The bird pecked her lower left leg causing significant hemorrhage with collapse and death. The decedent’s past medical history included treated hypertension, hyperlipidemia, non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus and varicose veins. At autopsy the major findings were limited to the lower left leg which was covered with adherent dried blood. Two small bleeding lacerations were present, one of which was located immediately over a perforated large varix. Death was therefore due to exsanguination from bleeding varicose veins following an attack by a rooster. This case demonstrates that even relatively small domestic animals may be able to inflict lethal injuries in individuals if there are specific vascular vulnerabilities present.

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Correspondence to Roger W. Byard.

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Fronczek, J., Byard, R.W. Fatal rooster attack. Forensic Sci Med Pathol 16, 191–194 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12024-019-00159-6

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  • Rooster
  • Death
  • Hemorrhage
  • Varicose veins
  • Animal attack