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Hens keep getting sick!

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi there. My mom and I are having some trouble with our hens. We've had four hens die on us in the last month or so. They all seem to be weak for a few days before. Two of them were Belgian Bantams but I'm not sure about the other two. All of our chickens are fed chicken scratch and they eat what's in the yard when they roam during the day. When my mom asked the feed store what could be happening, the woman said it could be the cold. We live in San Diego county (Southern California) so it doesn't get too cold. There were a few nights in the December where we had frost advisories but they made it through those. We raised chickens for almost 19 years and we've never had so many die on us in so little time. Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
post #2 of 8
It happens in winter more even I have lost 4 chickens as well your entire flock can be infected I had to eat all my chickens because of this and started again with vaccinated chickens
post #3 of 8
Are you feeding laying feed to your hens? How old are they? Have they been wormed?
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
We are feeding them normal feed. The bantams were 6 months old, one was 4 years old, and I'm not sure about the last one since we didn't buy her as a chick. No they have not been wormed. Is that something the breeder does when they hatch or something that should be done when they are older.
post #5 of 8

Worming is something that needs to be every now and then, throughout the lifetime of the bird. It's not a once and done sort of thing. As they roam, scratch around, and consume bugs, they are constantly being exposed to internal parasites. Eventually the parasite load becomes too high for a bird to stay healthy. A sudden fluctuation of temperature, combined with a high parasite load could stress a bird to the point of death.

post #6 of 8

Also, in your first post you mention feeding scratch. Scratch is not a complete feed, and should not be offered as a primary source of nutrition. 

post #7 of 8
Are they fed scratch grains or actual feed like pellets/crumbles/mash?
(Just trying to clarify since the first post says scratch and the other says normal feed.)

Edit- looks like Junebuggena caught the discrepancy too lol 😊
Edited by BeachMomma - 1/25/16 at 8:08am
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
They are fed scratch grains. Sorry for the confusion! We also feed them greens and cooked rice every once in a while. I will look into worming and using another type of feed.
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