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Mysterious Illness Killed 2 Pullets

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

We have been raising birds for 2 years and up until Friday, we had never lost one. However, on Thursday 2 of our 16 week old pullets (a Polish Tolbunt and an Olive Egger) went from seeming perfectly healthy to declining and dying in the course of 24 hours. The birds were lethargic and both of them had weakness in the left side of their body. The left leg was balled up and pulled close to the chest. We have 2 more 16 week old pullets and one of them may be getting sick as well. (I'm at work, my boyfriend called me and told me she seemed less lively than normal this morning.) I have no experience in chicken illnesses so I'm at a loss. Last week we extended the chicken's run and moved them into a larger coop. I don't know if the move could have triggered it? There is nothing toxic in the new coop that they could have gotten into, BUT when we extended the run I raked the whole thing out and I could have easily kicked up bacteria from old chicken manure.

 

Does anyone have any thoughts? We're very worried.

post #2 of 5

I would start  some poultry vitamins in the water. Check your feed for bad odors or off colors, since mold in feed can kill. It can go moldy overnight. Were your chickens vaccinated for Mareks disease? From this happening to 2 or more chickens, I would lean more toward vitamin deficiency, mold in feed, or some other toxin. Botulism can cause paralysis beginning in legs to wings to the neck before death. What brand of feed are you using?

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

They were vaccinated for Marek's. They have been eating Dumor Starter and it's an almost brand new bag. It's kept in the shed so it hasn't been exposed to any water. We've started the other 2 on Nutri-Drench and we're switching to Blue Seal feed. I'm hoping it's just a deficiency and that we've caught it early enough in the other 2 pullets.

post #4 of 5

Riboflavin is also necessary, and Nutri-drench doesn't have it. Liver, meats, nutritional yeast, and other foods in a small amount will supply that. Riboflavin (B2) deficency is typical for causing curled toe paralysis. Not to say they have Mareks, but many chickens who were supposed to have been vaccinated sometimes still can develop the disease. Hopefully not in your case.

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

I called the breeder and she confirmed they were vaccinated for Mareks. She suggested I get to Poly Vi Sol drops (w/o iron) and I checked and those do have Riboflavin. I'm at work for another hour and a half and then I'll be home to check on her and give her the drops. Thank you for your advice! I'll also do some research on Mareks so I'm familiar with the symptoms.


Edited by AmandaKyle - 10/27/15 at 10:49am
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