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Rescued a flock and they're our first chickens-advice?

post #1 of 3
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So we rescued 8 hens (Bovan Browns) and a rooster (giant black Cochin) from production. They are 12-14 months and we literally threw up a coop in a day. We had been wanting chickens for a while. The guy said he worked them and that they're coming out of molt. They're very friendly girls but we've only had them 3 days and are giving them space, trying to feed them by hand as much as possible. But the hens are missing feathers in many places, particularly around their necks and a few around their buttocks and chest, they look awful! They are laying well, biggest brown eggs I've ever seen, though a couple of them are hard but have a wrinkled texture in areas.
We are feeding them laying crumble and oyster shell, and they eat and drink like pigs. Anything else we should/should not do? How do I know if they're diseased, do I need to vaccinate them against anything?
One girl in particular I've noticed keeps going to the best and sitting and moving around and I can see her pushing/squeezing but no egg. I have no idea which ones are laying and which are not. 8 hens and so far 9 eggs and this is the third morning (but still early)
post #2 of 3

Bless you for providing them with a caring home.  The most important thing to do is make sure that their coop is safe.  I understand that you had to do it fast, but now you should go back and re-inforce or re build if necessary, to predator proof their digs.  If I were in your place, I would keep the layer and oyster shell in front of them all the time.  I would feed them whole sunflower seeds and chopped spinach as treats.  Allow them to free range on grass/weeds as much as you can.  I would worm them, first with Wazine, then with an broad spectrum wormer, being aware of any withdrawal (from eating eggs) periods needed.  I would treat them for external parasites with a spray or drops. After that, let nature take its course, they will look better and better with time.   

TIN STAR POULTRY - working toward  Standard bred Silver Campines --

Plus, A ragtag gathering of Ameraucanas for blue eggs, Black Copper Marans for dark brown eggs, and a pair of good

Rhode Island Reds.                                                Celebrating the second half of my first century!
 

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TIN STAR POULTRY - working toward  Standard bred Silver Campines --

Plus, A ragtag gathering of Ameraucanas for blue eggs, Black Copper Marans for dark brown eggs, and a pair of good

Rhode Island Reds.                                                Celebrating the second half of my first century!
 

Reply
post #3 of 3

Good for you.  Best news I can give you is continue to use this site.....it will save your little girls...and the boy.  Stay in the "emergency forum" and search "worming"   etc.  You will learn a ton and feel much more secure with your New Family.  Best to you

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