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Calcium Overdose

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BirdFarmer, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. BirdFarmer

    BirdFarmer New Egg

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    Aug 26, 2013
    Hello all,
    I am new to the forum thing but, I was hoping I could find some advice about Calcium overdose. I recently had two chickens die rather suddenly and am very concerned it could happen to the rest of my flock. The two chickens that died were about fifteen weeks old the rest of the chickens(black Australorps) are around a month older. The chickens that died were cuckoo marrans and showed symptoms of leg weekness and lethargic behavior. My older hens have survived 2 weeks since with no issues but being the woory wart I am, I am begining to absese over the idea that this issue might affect the rest of my flock.
    I offerd oyster shell as well as layer pellets because my older hens were showing signs of laying soon could calcium poisoning suddenly kill chickens like that.
    I have removed the oyster shells but i am still paranoid it could have been a contagious disease.
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    You can have problems like gout when their diet contains greater than 3% calcium and/or too little phosphorus.

    -Kathy
     
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    I doubt they died due to calcium overdose just from consuming crushed oyster shell. Birds instinctively eat it as needed. I suspect there was something else going on, maybe external parasites (mites.)
    Your concern for a contageous disease is warranted as well. Have you observed any types of symptoms or anything out of the ordinary with your other birds?
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  4. BirdFarmer

    BirdFarmer New Egg

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    Thank you for the reply, the other chickens have not shown many symptoms of illness. The only thing that could be better is there weight. They have a pronounced keel. Also i do hear the occasional sneeze but there is no nasal drainage or runny eyes. There poop looks normal no worms that i can see. Mites could be a possibility but i am not entirely sure what to look for as far as mites go. When i isolated the other bird(second one that died) she progressively lost use of both her legs and had very little interest in water. Then she after two days could not walk at all, but was not paralyzed in the way that Merak's typically does(one leg then the other) she was just weak in the legs. After that the bird began to show some signs of respiratory distress right before the end. But the first bird that died appeared to have died on the roost very suddenly. Does that still sound like it could be mites?
     
  5. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    I dont suspect marek's neither. You'll have to pick up your birds one by one and visually inspect them closely for lice/mites. Especially inspect their vent areas where its warm and moist. Mites suck blood causing anemia, then death. Mites look like black or red pepper, move very slow or not at all. Lice are whittish or off white in color and are fast crawlers.
    Here's a link for you with pics to help you identify external parasites, IF that's what happened to your 2 birds:
    http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ig140
     
  6. BirdFarmer

    BirdFarmer New Egg

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    i just got done inspecting all of them I couldn't find anything that resembled mites I did find what looked like silvery dandruff but when i examined closer i realized it was flakes off of the feather shafts not lice. Just in case i put diatomaceous earth in there dust-bath.
     
  7. BirdFarmer

    BirdFarmer New Egg

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    I am going to begin treatment for mites Along with regular checks for weight gain. But does anyone know how long I need to wait before i can be sure there were no infectious diseases in the rest of the flock?
     
  8. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    If they were mine, I would weigh all of them, dust them with poultry dust or 5% Sevin (DE doesn't ) work and worm them with Fenbendazole 10% (Safeguard or Panacur, liquid or paste) 50mg/kg by mouth and repeat in ten days.

    -Kathy
     
  9. BirdFarmer

    BirdFarmer New Egg

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    Thanks for the help will do!
     
  10. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    You'll find the wormer in most US feed stores in the cattle, goat and horse sections.

    -Kathy
     

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