Advice needed please reply

Joev1973

Songster
May 1, 2019
350
546
166
Hohenwald Tennessee
My Coop
My Coop
Ok having to make a post I hoped to never make in this dreaded health forum. Im a 2nd year chicken owner.

2 years ago I bought 30 chickens from murry mcmurry & paid for every available vaccination for the peeps.

Over the last 2 years I have incubated & hatched a couple dozen chicks all healthy. Never lost a single bird never found a dead chick or adult.

I keep my coops clean & change bedding regularly.

I began selling eggs at work to help pay for feed (not to get rich lol)

The orders quickly overwhelmed my egg capacity & I decided to buy some new hens. Being winter the hatcheries wont ship & figured if I incubated ot would be a half a year until I saw the eggs I need ASAP.

I put an ad in a local poultry group for pullets around 5 months old figuring in a month or two they would start to lay eggs.

I got several replies with reasonable offers for young pullets. 3 weeks ago I drove an hour away & picked up 5 black australorp hens, from a very clean farm with healthy birds & clean coops.

Added them to my flock no problems.

The same day I visited another farm to see some more pullets & was appalled at the conditions of both the property & condition of the birds. I also saw dead birds scattered about. I left & didnt buy any birds. The following day I visited a 3rd farm & again was appalled at poor conditions & left without buying any pullets.

Then 2 weeks ago I got a call from another fellow who had 10 rhode island red pullets & 5 silver laced Wyandotte pullets also 4 or 5 months old. I drove down & again the birds appeared healthy & they were in mobile chicken pens with clean earth underneath. I bought all 15 & brought them home added them to my flock with no problems. Thats 20 new birds introduced with no problems.

Then last week the same fellow called me with 5 golden comet pullets & 5 americauna pullets, I told him ok I will take them & drove down the following Saturday. The birds were in cages in the driveway as if maybe they just arrived.

The man who I cant say I Dont like explained he has "a buddy" who raises chicks & sells them as pullets to make a buck. Fair enough. I now doubt this story.

3 days after introducing the last batch of birds to my flock I went into the coop to fill the feeder & noticed a bird all alone up on the roost in the middle of the afternoon. I reached up & brought her up to the house. It was a rhode island red that was healthy for weeks. One eye was puffy & swelled shut & the other eye was full of fluid.

I isolated her & treated her with vetrx by putting it on her beak & near her eyes as well as giving her a squirt down the throat. I did this for 3 days & she was fine. Both eyes clear & open, no longer puffy.

A few days later I noticed another bird same symptoms. I treated her the same way & she recovered.

Monday after work I found a dead bird. On the floor of the coop. It was a black australorp that was healthy as ever days before.

The next day I noticed a black polish laying in the lawn sick. I treated him the same but the next morning he was gone. Over the next 4 days I have lost 5 birds total. I went to TSC & explained my problem to my friend who suggested I added some sort of vitamin supplement to their water which I did per directions 1/3 tsp per gallon then I bought a bag of medicated feed with higher protein & filled the feeders with that. For 2 or 3 days they have been eating the medicated feed & I have not found any more dead chickens but I am worried this problem will persist. I should also mention the little black polish who died was from another coop meaning the illness now went to both coops.

I should also mention that all my birds from murry mcmurry hatchery who had vaccines are unaffected by this illness. So far only the young birds are affected including some that I hatched.

Despite my caution & passing on birds from unclean places, despite my keeping clean coops with fresh bedding & regular cleanings I am afraid I made a terrible mistake & introduced some sort of bug that I wont be able to get rid of.

Lastly...without sounding like a bigot... I now know what happened. The town where I picked up the birds has a high Amish population who holds regular "barn sales" of poultry. I was warned 100 times by every farmer in my county to stay away from these sales as a lot of sick birds get auctioned off as healthy birds.

What I believed happened is when I first met the fellow to pick up the first batch of pullets I mentioned how I needed maybe 10 or 15 more. I now believe he went to one of these sales to buy the hens knowing I would pay him double what he would get them for at the Amish auction. He wanted to make a buck, I get it Thats how the world works.

I know this was a long post. I thank anyone who takes the time to explain what I may be dealing with & explains my options & helps me find a solution.

As of now I cant identify any more sick birds & they have been on medicated feed for 3 or 4 days for what its worth. Also the coop is air tight with heat


What do you think?


Merry Christmas to all & God Bless


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Last edited:

WindingRoad

Crowing
Nov 21, 2018
1,764
3,037
283
Maine
Ok having to make a post I hoped to never make in this dreaded health forum. Im a 2nd year chicken owner.

2 years ago I bought 30 chickens from murry mcmurry & paid for every available vaccination for the peeps.

Over the last 2 years I have incubated & hatched a couple dozen chicks all healthy. Never lost a single bird never found a dead chick or adult.

I keep my coops clean & change bedding regularly.

I began selling eggs at work to help pay for feed (not to get rich lol)

The orders quickly overwhelmed my egg capacity & I decided to buy some new hens. Being winter the hatcheries wont ship & figured if I incubated ot would be a half a year until I saw the eggs I need ASAP.

I put an ad in a local poultry group for pullets around 5 months old figuring in a month or two they would start to lay eggs.

I got several replies with reasonable offers for young pullets. 3 weeks ago I drove an hour away & picked up 5 black australorp hens, from a very clean farm with healthy birds & clean coops.

Added them to my flock no problems.

The same day I visited another farm to see some more pullets & was appalled at the conditions of both the property & condition of the birds. I also saw dead birds scattered about. I left & didnt buy any birds. The following day I visited a 3rd farm & again was appalled at poor conditions & left without buying any pullets.

Then 2 weeks ago I got a call from another fellow who had 10 rhode island red pullets & 5 silver laced Wyandotte pullets also 4 or 5 months old. I drove down & again the birds appeared healthy & they were in mobile chicken pens with clean earth underneath. I bought all 15 & brought them home added them to my flock with no problems. Thats 20 new birds introduced with no problems.

Then last week the same fellow called me with 5 golden comet pullets & 5 americauna pullets, I told him ok I will take them & drove down the following Saturday. The birds were in cages in the driveway as if maybe they just arrived.

The man who I cant say I Dont like explained he has "a buddy" who raises chicks & sells them as pullets to make a buck. Fair enough. I now doubt this story.

3 days after introducing the last batch of birds to my flock I went into the coop to fill the feeder & noticed a bird all alone up on the roost in the middle of the afternoon. I reached up & brought her up to the house. It was a rhode island red that was healthy for weeks. One eye was puffy & swelled shut & the other eye was full of fluid.

I isolated her & treated her with vetrx by putting it on her beak & near her eyes as well as giving her a squirt down the throat. I did this for 3 days & she was fine. Both eyes clear & open, no longer puffy.

A few days later I noticed another bird same symptoms. I treated her the same way & she recovered.

Monday after work I found a dead bird. On the floor of the coop. It was a black australorp that was healthy as ever days before.

The next day I noticed a black polish laying in the lawn sick. I treated him the same but the next morning he was gone. Over the next 4 days I have lost 5 birds total. I went to TSC & explained my problem to my friend who suggested I added some sort of vitamin supplement to their water which I did per directions 1/3 tsp per gallon then I bought a bag of medicated feed with higher protein & filled the feeders with that. For 2 or 3 days they have been eating the medicated feed & I have not found any more dead chickens but I am worried this problem will persist. I should also mention the little black polish who died was from another coop meaning the illness now went to both coops.

I should also mention that all my birds from murry mcmurry hatchery who had vaccines are unaffected by this illness. So far only the young birds are affected including some that I hatched.

Despite my caution & passing on birds from unclean places, despite my keeping clean coops with fresh bedding & regular cleanings I am afraid I made a terrible mistake & introduced some sort of bug that I wont be able to get rid of.

Lastly...without sounding like a bigot... I now know what happened. The town where I picked up the birds has a high Amish population who holds regular "barn sales" of poultry. I was warned 100 times by every farmer in my county to stay away from these sales as a lot of sick birds get auctioned off as healthy birds.

What I believed happened is when I first met the fellow to pick up the first batch of pullets I mentioned how I needed maybe 10 or 15 more. I now believe he went to one of these sales to buy the hens knowing I would pay him double what he would get them for at the Amish auction. He wanted to make a buck, I get it Thats how the world works.

I know this was a long post. I thank anyone who takes the time to explain what I may be dealing with & explains my options & helps me find a solution.

As of now I cant identify any more sick birds & they have been on medicated feed for 3 or 4 days for what its worth. Also the coop is air tight with heat


What do you think?


Merry Christmas to all & God Bless


View attachment 2462054 View attachment 2462055
Did you isolate your new birds. 2 weeks or more. Put them in a dog cage near the other birds so they can get used to each other but no interactions or touching..
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,799
11,392
611
North Florida
When you bring in new birds they should always be quarantined for optimally 30 days, so that if they are carrying anything, it will hopefully show up during quarantine and before you have exposed your flock. The stress of moving to a new place can be enough to trigger symptoms in birds carrying illness. It is not a perfect solution, but can save heartbreak. Quarantine means they can't even breathe the same air. Once quarantine is past then you integrate with the 'look but don't touch' system. Since that didn't happen then I would suggest that if you lose another one, or another one becomes very ill, that you send it in for necropsy to hopefully ID what you are dealing with. The swollen eye and fluid does sound like it's possibly respiratory, and some of those can be chronic, the birds will be carriers for life and symptoms will reappear during times of stress.
Lastly, you state your coop is 'air tight'. That is not optimal. Chicken coops should have plenty of ventilation, even in the winter, or you will have problems. On a cold morning go out early, before light, and feel the walls and ceiling of your coop. If it's damp, or worse dripping wet, then you need more ventilation. Moisture builds up from the respirations of the birds over night, without adequate ventilation, you are going to have problems. The birds will be fine if they are dry and there are no drafts, and they can get out of prevailing winds.
 

Joev1973

Songster
May 1, 2019
350
546
166
Hohenwald Tennessee
My Coop
My Coop
When you bring in new birds they should always be quarantined for optimally 30 days, so that if they are carrying anything, it will hopefully show up during quarantine and before you have exposed your flock. The stress of moving to a new place can be enough to trigger symptoms in birds carrying illness. It is not a perfect solution, but can save heartbreak. Quarantine means they can't even breathe the same air. Once quarantine is past then you integrate with the 'look but don't touch' system. Since that didn't happen then I would suggest that if you lose another one, or another one becomes very ill, that you send it in for necropsy to hopefully ID what you are dealing with. The swollen eye and fluid does sound like it's possibly respiratory, and some of those can be chronic, the birds will be carriers for life and symptoms will reappear during times of stress.
Lastly, you state your coop is 'air tight'. That is not optimal. Chicken coops should have plenty of ventilation, even in the winter, or you will have problems. On a cold morning go out early, before light, and feel the walls and ceiling of your coop. If it's damp, or worse dripping wet, then you need more ventilation. Moisture builds up from the respirations of the birds over night, without adequate ventilation, you are going to have problems. The birds will be fine if they are dry and there are no drafts, and they can get out of prevailing winds.


When I said air tight... I mean at night in the rarity it gets in the 30's I batten down the hatches. Where I live it stays HOT in the 90's from spring till fall. So I built the coop with open sides & plenty of ventilation. I also sealed the roof so no drafts then built something like hurricane shutters that I can open & close depending on the weather. Its designed so a 200 watt heat bulb sends the heat to the ceiling where its air tight making the roost warm yet allowing fresh air at floor level. Its currently a "code red" in South Tennessee meaning it was in the 30's so I have the windows covered. Being from Ohio I find the code red hysterical as I have felt -30 wind chill & a foot of lake Erie driven snow.
 

WindingRoad

Crowing
Nov 21, 2018
1,764
3,037
283
Maine
When I said air tight... I mean at night in the rarity it gets in the 30's I batten down the hatches. Where I live it stays HOT in the 90's from spring till fall. So I built the coop with open sides & plenty of ventilation. I also sealed the roof so no drafts then built something like hurricane shutters that I can open & close depending on the weather. Its designed so a 200 watt heat bulb sends the heat to the ceiling where its air tight making the roost warm yet allowing fresh air at floor level. Its currently a "code red" in South Tennessee meaning it was in the 30's so I have the windows covered. Being from Ohio I find the code red hysterical as I have felt -30 wind chill & a foot of lake Erie driven snow.
Are you raising chickens for eggs. Or are you looking for fried chicken. I strongly advise you to take that heat lamp out of there.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
4,653
13,567
536
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Not to echo the others, but a solid quarantine procedure and set up is an absolute must if bringing new avians onto your property. With as much physical separation as possible, and also methods. I feed, water, inspect my known birds first, THEN go do the same for new additions, THEN go clean up. Food and water are kept separate as well. I'm fortunate in that I can keep more than 200' between houses, and about 50' between the quarantine run and the main pasture (electric fenced), I know that's impractical for most - but even then, if I were to accidentally bring fowl pox onto the property, the local mosquitos range far enough they could potentially transfer. and since my quarantine run is outside my electric fence, housing new birds there is a risk to them as well. (I've not strung up the wire yet to fix that, need more insulators, but not currently in the budget (or the plans - not adding external birds this year).

Its all about risk management.

What you can reasonably do to mitigate risk, you should do - understanding that there are no guarantees - how much risk you are willing to take depends upon your investments in your current birds and your discretionary budget. Those are decisions I can't make for you.
 

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