A Lone survivor after Marek’s

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Hyunsoo Moon, Nov 30, 2017.

  1. Hyunsoo Moon

    Hyunsoo Moon In the Brooder

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    Jul 23, 2017
    Los Angeles, CA
    Hello all, we used to have 5 chickens, and 4 chickens died due to Marlek’s disease. We have one chicken now, and we don’t know what to do. She’s lonely, squawks a lot, and we have been advised not to get more, since she’s now a carrier and the disease is in the soil. We tried giving her stuffed animals but she seems to be really scared of them. Does anyone have advise for the situation? We have thought about giving her up, but it’d have to be with a flock that has survived Marek’s....
     
  2. Don't worry about Marek's disease in the soil. Marek's disease is spread by the dandruff that sluffs of of pen feathers when they mature and harden. You might say it is an airborne disease.

    What makes you believe that this one chicken has contacted Marek's disease and survived? Survived is the correct word because Marek's is incurable and every survivor becomes a Marek's disease carrier for the life of that hen or rooster..
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

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    With Marek's there are options when considering adding to your exposed flock. It's true that the virus has now taken up long-term residence in your soil and facilities, and your last chicken is now a carrier. But there is a vaccine that will allow you to have baby chicks immunized at the hatchery and after a few weeks of quarantine while the immunity takes hold, they can then be integrated into your flock.

    You also have the option of locating older pullets that have been vaccinated. Or you can take your chances, introduce some new chickens, and wait and see if they will develop resistance and survive.

    I'm in a similar fix, myself. I have lymphotic leucosis in my flock. It's very similar to Marek's but there is no vaccination for it. When I add to my flock, I'm prepared to lose some, but most of the new chickens have developed resistance and are doing just fine.
     
    nminusyplusm likes this.
  4. Hyunsoo Moon

    Hyunsoo Moon In the Brooder

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    Jul 23, 2017
    Los Angeles, CA
    Really? Many people have said that the virus can live in the soil for up to a year.

    We think it’s Marek’s because the necropsy from the other chickens confirmed that they died due to Marek’s. And the one survivor showed similar symptoms a while ago for a day, but recovered very quickly, while the other one got sicker and sicker and recently died.
     
  5. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

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    If you got a necropsy, then you can be almost 100% certain you have Marek's. A necropsy of a young cockerel informed me of the virus in my flock.

    It's not known how long Marek's virus lives in the soil, but it's definitely over a year, and some estimates are as long as ten years. Be safe in assuming that it's not going away any time soon, no matter how deeply you try to clean. Even if you got rid of the one chicken that is a carrier, the virus will still remain in the soil and premises.

    The news is bad, sure, but knowing what you're dealing with opens up more options than not knowing but suspecting something bad is killing your chickens.
     

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