If your birds have their feet on the ground and have a chance to eat bugs.... odds are they have worms!
There are many types of worms out there. If you REALLY want to know if your birds have worms, take a few stool specimens to your vet and let them look at them, just as you would do for a dog or cat. WORMS are small and may not be seen with the naked eye. One thing is for sure.... IF YOU SEE WORMS, you have a PROBLEM!
Just because you don't see worms, DOES NOT MEAN you do not have a PROBLEM!
There are TWO schools of thought.....
Those who believe in all natural things ( DE, vinegar in the water, herbs, etc) will prevent AND treat for worms.
Those who believe in the over the counter chemicals.
I am of the over the counter chemical crowd. My vet recommend that I worm my pigs twice a year. I figured that would be a good place to start with the chickens - twice a year.
I have a good BYC friend who lives 30 to 60 miles aways from me. He has to worm his flock FOUR times a year because of reoccuring worm issues. It is what it is!
I went almost TWO years worming my birds twice a year without ever seeing a worm. Then one day I walked out there and saw something moving in a fresh poop.... YEP, tapeworms.
I have 50 birds and wormed them all! I watch poops right after worming and sure enough lots of worms were being excreted! GROSS!
TAPEWORMS are only killed by Valbrazen. Different wormers do different things. WAZINE only does round worms.
FOLLOW-UP is VERY IMPORTANT - CRUCIAL with worming. The first treatment kills the adults. TEN DAYS later, a second treatment will treat the larve that hatched since the first treatment.
A THIRD TREATMENT may be needed IF there is a really good free ranging spot that the birds are re-infecting themselves in ( ie a compost pile ). The idea is to BREAK THE CYCLE!
YOU must be deligent. If you have ever had a child and had to deal with head lice - - - think about how deligent you have to be AND how re-infestation can occur even through you have done everything right!
VALBRAZEN is a wormer that they use on humans for treatment of worms from eating pork. There is an egg withdrawal period of 14 days. So, during treatment AND 14 days after treatment - - you don't want to give away or sell any of your eggs. You never know who might be allergeric to the wormer.
Dosage - - I found this BYC member's page to be very nicely done.