BlackHead in Turkeys

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by Shelshanam, Nov 24, 2012.

  1. Shelshanam

    Shelshanam In the Brooder

    Couple of questions.

    I'm just starting my adventure with Turkey raising and want to make sure I'm doing everything correctly. I had planned on converting a 10x16 shed into my Turkey barn but realize it's really close to my chickens.

    Then I thought I read that Blackhead Disease is a regional thing (but on more research I can't find anything to back that up). I'm trying to find out if it is something that is in Southern Oregon?

    So should I move my Turkey Pen away from any area the chickens have been near or around in the past?

    I'm getting some hatching eggs soon for the New Years day hatch-a-long, and I have some more heritage breed turkeys arriving in April so I do have plently of time to build them a new shelter and predator proof pen clean on the other side of my property.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    Find an avian pathologist and talk to him/her. I have several veterinary books and literature, but none of them mention anything about it being "regional".
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2012
  3. Shelshanam

    Shelshanam In the Brooder

    I could find nothing on it as well after I went in search of some research that might help me. It just seems to have been mentioned on a few postings and I can see the point of sandy soil maybe not having a large earthworm population.

    I've done a lot of reading over the last few days about the whole thing and I realize I have a large wild bird population (everything from finches on up to wild turkeys) as well so worrying about my chickens is the least of the problem. I'm just going to have to keep a very close eye on them and decide if I want them free ranging or not.

    Thanks for the reply!
  4. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    I have a huge blackhead problem here, but I'm managing by recognizing early symptoms and treating with metronidazole and fenbendazole. I'm not planning on eating my turkeys, so I have no problem with using FDA banned drugs like metronidazole and Baytril.
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    FYI, my problems didn't start until we moved to this property, which had never had any poultry on it. However, it was previously used for different types of farming... hay, corn, peppers, etc.
  6. Frosty

    Frosty Songster

    Mar 30, 2008
    If I recall correctly, someone mentioned in another group about there not being any known cases of Blackhead in OR. Some folks say that it's more of a problem in warmer climates, but it does exist in MI. Lots of us raise turkeys and chickens together with no problem, others have blackhead show up. Just watch for symptoms. For the record, it isn't recommended that you even have them on the same property. If you do decide to keep them seperate, you would need to practice very strict bio-security or you might as well have them together. All of the distance in the world won't make a difference if you wear the same boots from one pen to the next.

    One thing to try to prepare for, though it might not do any good... turkeys are addictive! What colors are you getting?
  7. aoxa

    aoxa Crowing

    Blackhead is more common in certain regions. Was told this by the agricultural department. There hasn't been any cases of blackhead in years around me. I keep my poultry and chickens together.

    So I would definitely check into your department of agriculture. Worth it!
  8. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General

    You might want to try talking to some avian vets and avian pathologists at your vet school. The ones at UC Davis have been very helpful.
  9. Shelshanam

    Shelshanam In the Brooder

    Thanks for more replies again!

    I actually have the email address of a state Vet who I met at a goat education day so I'm going to fire off an email to him and see what he says.

    And it's true bio security would be horrible as I would have to have two pair of muck boots and I'm so hard on them that my last pair only made it 3 months! And I didn't buy the knock offs but the original Muck! So I'm not going to worry about moving the turkeys clear to the other side of the property.

    And yes I can see them being addictive! I have Royal Palm Hatching eggs on the way for the New Years day hatch-a-ling and also have ordered 16 Narragansett's for spring. I'm pretty sure I probably won't stop there!

    So I'm gonna keep an eye on them, keep medication on hand in case of an outbreak, and try to not worry too much. I've been to several farms around here with both chickens and turkeys being kept together and I've asked if they've had any problems. So far no one has said "yes".
  10. aoxa

    aoxa Crowing

    :D So glad to hear you chose Royal Palms

    I just adore my pair. They are very entertaining and endearing. They love humans, and didn't need any encouragement to attach to us. They were even raised by their parents, yet they still eat out of our hands.

    Tom strutting for the silkies

    Just being handsome <3

    He's only 5 months old. What a big man he is. :love

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