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Bulge below earlobe

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Haffertee, Jan 31, 2015.

  1. Haffertee

    Haffertee Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    We are new to chickens (chicks last April) and this is my first post.

    I did some searching on this,but it was mostly inconclusive.
    This is a Buff Orpington. She is 8 months old and seems to be happy.
    Can someone tell me what this is? Does it need treatment?
    This is the area below her ear that normally has no feathers already, and the other side of her head is normal, with a bit of loose, wrinkly skin where this side is bulging.
    It is not hot. It's kind of soft, but not too squishy. She doesn't mind if I touch it.

    thanks!!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC. Her earlobe is swollen possibly from an ear infection, which can be due to mites, infection, or if she has nasal congestion or noisy breathing, could be due to a respiratory disease. Respiratory infections can affect the ear, and if it is that Tylan or oxytetracycline may help. If the ear is infected, you are going to have to clean out the ear to get the gunk out. Hydrogen peroxide and plain Neosporin, triple antibiotic, etc. may help with that. Antibiotics such as amoxicillin or sulfadimethoxine may help treat an ear infection. Check out these links about ear infections, and read Dawg53's comments--post #5 in the first link, post #4 in the second link, and here are some more to read:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/630778/gunky-ears
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/767500/ear-infection
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/919235/ear-infection-in-rooster
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/831156/really-nasty-ear-infection-in-a-silkie-hen-graphic-pics
     
  3. Haffertee

    Haffertee Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    Thanks, Eggcessive.

    I saw these links before I posted.
    She doesn't seem to be congested in any way (no noisy breathing or anything).
    She has no discharge or anything from her ears. No gunk.

    Can I just watch her? do I need to separate her?
     
  4. Haffertee

    Haffertee Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 5, 2014
    Update: We just found (and removed) a large tick below the bulge. We hope that was the cause and will watch her to see if the swelling goes down.
     
  5. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Apply an antibiotic ointment where you removed the tick. Also, you can give your hen children's liquid benadryl to reduce swelling. Administer 1/2cc orally to your hen for 24 hours only. Do not overdose your hen using children's liquid benadryl.
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Hopefully Dawg's advice on giving the Benadryl will help. It's good that you found the tick. Someone else recently had a hen with swollen wattles, and found a tick, and Dawg's advice for Benadryl did the trick. Let us know how she gets along.
     
  7. Haffertee

    Haffertee Out Of The Brooder

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    Well, she was doing just fine and the swelling was going down. I actually kind of forgot about the whole ordeal.

    Then today, my son went down and found the swelling twice as bad. The bulge has doubled the original swelling and both wattles are somewhat swollen. Other hens were beginning to peck at her.

    We found a SECOND tick on her throat!

    Tick removed. Neosporin applied, and 1ml liquid benadryl. We put her in a large crate in the garage, where we can watch her.
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Gosh, it sounds like you may need to do some preventative treatment around the poultry house. It's good you found the tick again. There have been quite a few cases of this lately. Here is a good link to read about fowl ticks: http://www.merckmanuals.com/vet/poultry/ectoparasites/fowl_ticks.html

    Here is a paragraph from another link by MSU:

    Fowl Tick (Blue Bug)
    The Fowl Tick (Argas persicus) may be a serious parasite of poultry if it becomes numerous in poultry houses or on poultry ranges. The tick is a blood-sucker, and when present in large numbers it results in weakened birds, reduced egg production, emaciation and even death. The fowl tick is found throughout most of the South and is extremely hardy. Ticks have been kept alive without food for more than three years. The ticks will feed on all fowl.
    Fowl ticks spend most of their lives in cracks and hiding places, emerging at night to take a blood meal. Mating takes place in the hiding areas. A few days after feeding, the female lays a batch of eggs. In warm weather the eggs hatch within fourteen days. In cold weather they may take up to three months to hatch. Larvae that hatch from the eggs crawl around until they find a host fowl. They remain attached to the birds for three to ten days. After leaving the birds they find hiding places and molt before seeking another blood meal. This is followed by additional moltings and blood meals.
    Ticks are difficult to eradicate and methods employed must be performed carefully. It is not necessary to treat the birds, but houses and surrounding areas must be treated thoroughly.
     
  9. Haffertee

    Haffertee Out Of The Brooder

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    YES, tonight we will be checking all our birds for ticks!
     
  10. Haffertee

    Haffertee Out Of The Brooder

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    No other birds have any signs of ticks. They all seem to be healthy. (although we are getting 1/2 as many eggs as we were last week.)

    two days ago, we put put polysporin on it and gave her 1 mL children's liquid benadryl. We made a place for her in the garage in our dog crate separated from the other hens.
    As you can see in this photo, this time the lump is much larger (about the size of a golf ball), blueish, and the other side is also swollen, as well as her wattles & throat some, too.

    She is eating and drinking, and laid an egg this morning.


    [​IMG]
     

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