BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
Jan 11, 2007
NE Washington State
Everyone should read this thread about Biosecurity.

It is very important that you quarantine your birds no matter the source and if you have even one sick bird, your moral obligation is to NOT sell, swap, trade or give away any birds from your flock until you isolate the problem and fix it. This is probably the main reason the rules and regs are so tight anymore, IMO.

Too many of our members have been devastated by bringing in a sick chick or hen. Don't take a chance on it happening to you!
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thootp veteran
11 Years
Apr 10, 2008
Washington, PA
I've been a BYC member for a short amount of time (only a few months), but the amount of posts I've seen regarding people losing substantial amounts of their flock because of a swap or buy of someone else's birds is astounding!

Even with quarantining birds, why would anyone participate in the practices of swapping birds?

It seems like the risks of flock mixing far outweigh the benefits unless you are 100% sure that the source is trusted.

Or am I just reading in to this too much? This post is not meant to be judgemental. I just have been scared to bejesus by people's sad stories and they appear to be pretty common.
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Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Mar 25, 2008
I can't stress this enough to anyone. If you absolutely must buy, trade, or swap with someone, QUARANTINE! QUARANTINE! QUARANTINE! Even chicks can carry illness and disease. I've learned this the hard way. Do not trust that the chick or chicken that you come home with isn't sick. Even if they come from trusted persons, you just never know. The heartache that comes with learning this lesson the hard way is just not worth it. QUARANTINE!


Intentional Solitude
Premium Feather Member
13 Years
Feb 3, 2007
Blue Ridge Mtns. of North Georgia
Absolutely, QUARANTINE! It is not perfect, but it's the least you can do to keep your flock safe. Better yet, never take in started birds from a swap, flea market, show, individual, etc. Yes, it limits you, but it actually frees you, IMO. Free from so much worry and heartache. Even if you buy birds from me, I want you to quarantine them! I have only bought birds from a hatchery or hatched them from my flock, with the exception of one, Hawkeye, my Barred Rock rooster. He was in quarantine for over a month and at one point, I thought he had a certain disease. Luckily, he did not, but even when you quarantine birds, that is still no guarantee. SO many diseases make recovered birds carriers for life, meaning they can make your healthy birds ill even when they dont have symptoms. If they make it through quarantine with no signs of illness, you are still not entirely out of the woods. So, please, please, please quarantine your birds for a minimum of 30 days, not allowing them to breathe the same air as your birds. Disinfect thoroughly everywhere they go and dont go directly to your birds from caring for the quarantined one(s) without changing clothes and washing up well. I just hate to see so much heartache and expense incurred from not following these guidelines, inconvenient though they may seem.
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12 Years
Dec 18, 2007
Great post. I am so sorry for anyone who has had the heartache of unknowingly introducing a sick bird into their flock.


11 Years
May 8, 2008
heck I get nervous when going to horse shows that I might touch another horse that is somehow contagious with something. When we hit the fairs this fall I will be making the family change clothes before visiting our own flock when we get home. And I ABSOLUTELY quarantine! I am not a germ phob. But hell.. parents that send sick kids to daycare, playgroup and school annoy the day lights out of me. No way am I risking exposing my girls to something potentially deadly


12 Years
Dec 22, 2007
Maryland :)
That was a great post, and i need it too! I'm getting 12 new chicks on Saturday[not from a hatchery just from a chicken farmer] and if i didn't see that who knows what would of happened

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