chickens, ticks, discolored wattles

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by 7&8, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. 7&8

    7&8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yesterday I belatedly noticed a full tick latched on at the bantam's ear. It literally fell off when I went to remove it (then fell to the ground where one of the other chickens promptly ate it - bleeeech!).

    This afternoon, I noticed that the wattles on the banty that had had the tick on her yesterday are uniformly grey/ blackish - almost the entire wattle is discolored.

    The hen is fine in all other respects - laying, eating, drinking, ranging, etc.

    Any thoughts on the discoloration of her wattles?
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2010
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Tick bites' secretions can introduce various diseases into the host. The good news is that it doesnt happen often. You could put a small dab of iodine on the bite area and just monitor the wattle. It should return to normal coloration in time. As long as she's eatng and drinking normally, she'll be fine.
     
  3. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

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    I'm not sure about the discoloration of the wattles, but prolonged poultry tick infestation can cause anemia. Did the tick look like either of the following?:
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Even if they don't, look on your roosts tonight within the first hour after sunset to see if they are there. Poultry ticks typically hide in crevices during the day and move up onto the chickens during the first hour after dark. If you found one, there could be many more (if they are poultry ticks).
     
  4. 7&8

    7&8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the replies.

    Living where I do and working in a Hospital Lab, I have a pretty good grip on the whole tick thing. The tick was a Deer Tick nymph, and of course they are notorious carriers of Lyme. The hen picked up her hitchhiker in the yard...same place I get them on me.

    What I'm really questioning is the uniform darkening of the hen's wattles, perhaps in response to the tick having likely been attached for up to 24hrs. or so, and if not this, then what might be the cause.

    I saw the recent post inquiring about black speckling/blotches on wattles/combs. I'm also interested to know causes of wattle/comb discoloration. These appendages are definitely barometers, e.g., deepening red with sexual maturity, etc.

    Thank you!
     
  5. 7&8

    7&8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Gallo del Cielo...them's the grossest things I've ever seen! Thanks so much for posting the photos. I'll have to check out more about poultry ticks, especially size of. But I do know that the bantam's tick was a Deer Tick.
     
  6. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

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    7&8 :

    Gallo del Cielo...them's the grossest things I've ever seen! Thanks so much for posting the photos. I'll have to check out more about poultry ticks, especially size of. But I do know that the bantam's tick was a Deer Tick.

    I'm glad for you that it was not a Poultry tick. [​IMG] There almost certainly would be many more in the coop if it were. Good luck with your wattle question. Can you post a pic?​
     
  7. 7&8

    7&8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This morning, the hen came out of the coop with the others - like a shot - and proceeded to scratch herself up a worm half as long as she is, and eat it. She seems fine.

    I searched around the internet for info on wattle discoloration last night, and the most I found were articles on frostbite and Avian Flu. One of the possible symptoms of Avian Flu in chickens is purplish wattles. Here's hoping that's not what I'm looking at. My intuition is that the discoloration is related to the tick bite. Right or wrong, I have not quarantined the hen. As I said, she is not exhibiting any symptoms of being ill - other than the discolored wattles.

    The discoloration on her wattles this morning is bi-lateral and uniform and has darkened slightly. The photo is from this morning.

    [​IMG]
     

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