Bought some hens 3 hours ago and they are now acting a bit off

HeatherLynn

Songster
10 Years
May 11, 2009
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Kentucky, Cecilia
Went to my first chicken swap. I bought several additions and am happy BUT. I bought 3 larger black hens and they started acting odd in the car. Almost sounds like they have hiccups and they are panting. They have water now and food. My daughter insists she heard coughing. I sat back there for an hour and never heard a thing. The only thing I notice is after they drink they make the hiccup sound and shake their head funny. I have ACV out and I just put some water with a bit of antibiotic in it. Their poop looks ok. They had a couple poops when they first got in the cage that were runny yellow but after they were in the cool of the car and settled they pooped a ton and it was all pretty normal looking. I would say 2 out of probably the few dozen poops looked odd.

So is this just it was hot, they are under stress and needed water or should I be segregating just a bit further away and crossing my fingers?
 

speckledhen

Intentional Solitude
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13 Years
Feb 3, 2007
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Take out the antibiotic pronto. You will probably mask symptoms you need to see. Never give AB's during quarantine.

Just observe them and wait till they calm down from the change of environment. Then see what they're doing.
 

oldchickenlady

Songster
9 Years
May 9, 2010
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Absolutely isolate them from your chickens. You could lose your whole flock if these birds have some illness. I am not sure how long they should be quarentined, but I am sure some of the more knowledgable people on here could tell you.
 

HeatherLynn

Songster
10 Years
May 11, 2009
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ok I'll run out. Do I not give them ACV either? What am I looking for? If something is up I want to try to save these. I swear chickens are so fun and so stressful.
 

speckledhen

Intentional Solitude
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Feb 3, 2007
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You can give them ACV, but you want to see if respiratory issues come to the surface so no antibiotics. Was this the swap in Sadieville?


You look for discharges from eyes, ears, nose, vent, as well as check for lice/mites, plus any breathing issues. You can treat for lice and you can worm them during quarantine. Still, if they are disease carriers, it may not show up until weeks down the road or until birds you already own become ill. This is why I never buy started birds--way too stressful for me.


You want to try to save them, you said, but that isn't a good way to think. You want to be sure they do not have anything to pass onto your own flock, if at all possible. If they do, the only answer is to cull. Worms and lice are easily dealt with, but respiratory stuff can lurk in the your flock forever if it gets in. What breed are they?

Oh, I wanted to say that they shouldn't come in contact with your flock at all, not even with a fence between them, during quarantine.
 

HeatherLynn

Songster
10 Years
May 11, 2009
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Kentucky, Cecilia
Ok, I put them in the garden in a small chicken tractor we had not been using. It is just a fence away from the chickens outside run but they can't even get to the fence in the tractor. I gave them water with just ACV in a plastic waterer. I did check for mites and such but I saw nothing. I'll probably dust anyway since even thinking about creepy crawlies makes me itch. I dusted the last hens I bought.

I have an almost non existent flock yet and no incubator so hatching isn't yet an option.

The lady said she bought them as black sexlinks but was told they were austrolops. So I am not sure. I got 3 hens. Honestly I just thought they were pretty and I want more hens so my rooster stops being a butt with my 4 other hens. The others I got were young chicks and a 3 teenage ones. All these seem fine but they are all segregated atm. I just wonder if these are struggling because of the heat and no water. It was a 2 hour drive back. We were there an hour. I don't know.

Hate to think of asking the hubby to cull them if something comes up. I'll do it if need be but I don't like to think about it.
 

Cetawin

Chicken Beader
11 Years
Mar 20, 2008
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Heather...it was so hot and humid there today, they could easily be suffering from dehydration or heat stroke. Keep them separated from your birds, the new teens and babies and watch them. Keep all the birds apart for 30 days minimum and watch them for signs of illness.

You must have slipped by me with them because I never saw any "big girls" that were Aussies or Black Sexlinks. Can you get a pic of them...in the sunlight? If they have a beautiful beetle green sheen to their feathers that is the easiest way to distinguish them as Aussies...the sexlinks seem to be duller and more consistently black.

Your teens and babies should be fine...I know where you got them
She takes excellent care of her birds and has a healthy flock so you should not have problems but keep them quarantind anyway...it is just good biosecurity measures. I have some of those babies too and I will let you know if I notice anything with any of mine but they are doing wonderfully.
 

HeatherLynn

Songster
10 Years
May 11, 2009
2,045
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Kentucky, Cecilia
So excited about those babies. Just in case I am washing my hands like a mad woman. Taking off shoes at the door. Not letting kids touch ect ect. I have never raised one that small. All the ones I got were soo much bigger. My silkie was HUGE in comparison when I got him.

He was in his ugly stage.



I got them from the lady with the goats. 3 hens. The birds look good honestly just acting off and keep making a noise and they are drinking like there is no tomorrow. I just fret. I am hoping its like with the kids. I worry myself sick and they run like little monkeys oblivious to the fact they are making me fret. The hubby was sweet enough to build me a few separation coops that can be located in the few shady parts of my garden. Thats still fenced in and close to the house but separate from the others. Please be the heat. Should I offer some electrolytes to them? I have done for babies but never adults but if the heat got to them?? maybe?? I am keeping them in a nice cool shady spot under the cherry for now.

These do have a pretty sheen to the feathers. Almost ocean colors if you know what I mean. Just a bit of sheen on the black.
 

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