Collapsing/uncoordinated goslings

axolotl

Hatching
6 Years
May 3, 2013
3
2
9
I wondered if anyone here would be able to help me. I have tried to find any information about the problems I'm having on the Internet and have drawn blanks. I have two goslings that I hatched about a week and a half ago that have become ill. I had nine fertile eggs, one of one breed and the others from a different breed, from entirely different sources. The single egg of the first breed hatched on time, perfectly normal hatch, healthy, normal gosling. Of the other eggs, only one made it past internal pip, although at least five of the others were fully developed and with heads turned into position (may be related, may not, some of the air cells looked proportionally small even though humidity was 30-45% throughout incubation). This one egg pipped externally but upon candling was lying on the pip hole, so I made another hole so it could breathe. >48 hours after external pip it was not making progress, so I dismantled the egg over several hours. The gosling was weak and did not seem to be able to sit in a normal position or hold up its head. It bled and I expected it to die, but kept it warm and put sugary water in its beak with an eye dropper, and it recovered.

Both goslings went out into the brooder in the shed, under a heat lamp. I moved house recently so there have not been birds in this location before. Up until they were about a week old, they were doing fine. They are eating crumbs specifically for goslings and ducklings and chopped-up grass with some grit scattered on the towel. The first one got very big quickly but the runty one didn't grow so fast, but both were active and running around.

Then I went into the shed one morning to find the runty one collapsed on its back, away from the heat lamp. I immediately took it back in the house thinking it was having a setback, and put sugary water and gosling food into its beak as it didn't seem to be eating. It could not stand or walk, and when turned into the proper position just flung itself over again. The next day the fat, healthy gosling had collapsed in the same way. I took both geese to the vet. The vet was not much use, said he did not know much about avians, said I could either take them to a university in the next city (too far), send one for necropsy (I only had two and they are both rare breeds, so no way), leave them and see what happens, or try an antibiotic. So I opted to try the antibiotic and have been giving them Baytril with a syringe. That was the day before yesterday.

As of today, the runty gosling is eating again and can stand up if turned in the right position, although it soon falls over when it tries to walk and cannot right itself. Most of the time I tape its feet to a piece of card in a sitting position and tape the card to the floor of the box it is in because I cannot be there all the time to keep picking it up -- and it usually poos all over itself and I am getting dermatitis from constantly washing my hands. The fat one (the vet weighed them and it's more than twice the size of the runty one) is too big and heavy to tape down, and lies on its side flailing its legs. Its neck is bent into a peculiar position. It continues to eat and drink normally, although sometimes it has to be held so it can do so.

My most immediate problem is this: I have twenty duck eggs candled developing, today day 9, in an incubator. I need to know what this disease is so I can do something to stop it affecting the ducks when they hatch. Does anyone have any ideas what might be going on with my geese?
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Oct 3, 2009
114,662
134,034
1,962
Mountains of Western N.C.
I wondered if anyone here would be able to help me. I have tried to find any information about the problems I'm having on the Internet and have drawn blanks. I have two goslings that I hatched about a week and a half ago that have become ill. I had nine fertile eggs, one of one breed and the others from a different breed, from entirely different sources. The single egg of the first breed hatched on time, perfectly normal hatch, healthy, normal gosling. Of the other eggs, only one made it past internal pip, although at least five of the others were fully developed and with heads turned into position (may be related, may not, some of the air cells looked proportionally small even though humidity was 30-45% throughout incubation). This one egg pipped externally but upon candling was lying on the pip hole, so I made another hole so it could breathe. >48 hours after external pip it was not making progress, so I dismantled the egg over several hours. The gosling was weak and did not seem to be able to sit in a normal position or hold up its head. It bled and I expected it to die, but kept it warm and put sugary water in its beak with an eye dropper, and it recovered.

Both goslings went out into the brooder in the shed, under a heat lamp. I moved house recently so there have not been birds in this location before. Up until they were about a week old, they were doing fine. They are eating crumbs specifically for goslings and ducklings and chopped-up grass with some grit scattered on the towel. The first one got very big quickly but the runty one didn't grow so fast, but both were active and running around.

Then I went into the shed one morning to find the runty one collapsed on its back, away from the heat lamp. I immediately took it back in the house thinking it was having a setback, and put sugary water and gosling food into its beak as it didn't seem to be eating. It could not stand or walk, and when turned into the proper position just flung itself over again. The next day the fat, healthy gosling had collapsed in the same way. I took both geese to the vet. The vet was not much use, said he did not know much about avians, said I could either take them to a university in the next city (too far), send one for necropsy (I only had two and they are both rare breeds, so no way), leave them and see what happens, or try an antibiotic. So I opted to try the antibiotic and have been giving them Baytril with a syringe. That was the day before yesterday.

As of today, the runty gosling is eating again and can stand up if turned in the right position, although it soon falls over when it tries to walk and cannot right itself. Most of the time I tape its feet to a piece of card in a sitting position and tape the card to the floor of the box it is in because I cannot be there all the time to keep picking it up -- and it usually poos all over itself and I am getting dermatitis from constantly washing my hands. The fat one (the vet weighed them and it's more than twice the size of the runty one) is too big and heavy to tape down, and lies on its side flailing its legs. Its neck is bent into a peculiar position. It continues to eat and drink normally, although sometimes it has to be held so it can do so.

My most immediate problem is this: I have twenty duck eggs candled developing, today day 9, in an incubator. I need to know what this disease is so I can do something to stop it affecting the ducks when they hatch. Does anyone have any ideas what might be going on with my geese?
Not sure it's a disease but so sorry this is happening, and not sure if Baytril is the right antibiotic as I just read in the duck thread it is not a good one to treat waterfowl. Have you thought of giving them extra niacin in their water or adding Brewers yeast to their feed? at least since your duck eggs are only on day 9 you have time to figure this out. Wish I could be of more help hopefully someone else will give better advise.
 

RURU

Songster
8 Years
Jan 25, 2011
2,411
144
203
Troy, Missouri
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If you do not have Niacin or brewers yeast around give them cooked peas. Peas have lots of niacin in them. Sounds like they are having equilibrium problems and niacin is good to help them with that.
Hope this will work for you... Good luck with your babies.
 

axolotl

Hatching
6 Years
May 3, 2013
3
2
9
My runty gosling appeared to be doing a lot better, and was up and walking around and getting bigger. But at about four weeks old, it collapsed again and died the next night. I took it to a vet to have a necropsy done and the vet thinks they have goose parvo. I'm posting this so others can be aware of this disease.

Thanks to the people who tried to help.
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Oct 3, 2009
114,662
134,034
1,962
Mountains of Western N.C.
My runty gosling appeared to be doing a lot better, and was up and walking around and getting bigger. But at about four weeks old, it collapsed again and died the next night. I took it to a vet to have a necropsy done and the vet thinks they have goose parvo. I'm posting this so others can be aware of this disease.

Thanks to the people who tried to help.
So sorry for your loss I have never heard of goose parvo.
 

8GeeseALaying

Songster
6 Years
Mar 15, 2013
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Signing off for good. No longer own fowl or poultr
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I looked it up. Its also called derzsy's disease and is a different strain of parvo compared to what dogs and chickens get. Can affect mostly geese and muscovey ducks at any age, the younger the gosling or duckling the worse the mortality rate. Can affect other waterfowl. Also said that it all depends on the amount of maternal antibodies passed on to the baby makes a difference in the severity of the disease. Survivors of the virus should not be allowed to reproduce because they can pass it on and eggs from different flocks should not be hatched together unless you know the health history of the parents it can spread and is very contagious. Only prevention is to immunize breeding birds with the live vaccine.
Look up goose parvo or derzsy's disease and you can see the list of symptoms. It seems to be a nasty thing that these poor babies that
get it go through. After i read the beginning of this thread and saw that falling backwards was one symptom with these goslings i was afraid my 2 ducklings had it, but the list did not say anything about falling or flailing.
 
Last edited:

RURU

Songster
8 Years
Jan 25, 2011
2,411
144
203
Troy, Missouri
My Coop
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Just a question since I have never heard of this before. Were the goslings from your breeding birds or did you purchase eggs to hatch? The reason I ask is this could cause a very big problem with someone healthy flock if the goslings are hatched with it. The birds that produce the eggs might be the culprit of the virus. It would be good not to use those birds for breeding if this is the cause. When you find out what the results of the necropsy and it shows this is the cause you will have decisions to make.
I am so sorry this has happened to you and the goslings.
hugs.gif
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Oct 3, 2009
114,662
134,034
1,962
Mountains of Western N.C.
I looked it up. Its also called derzsy's disease and is a different strain of parvo compared to what dogs and chickens get. Can affect mostly geese and muscovey ducks at any age, the younger the gosling or duckling the worse the mortality rate. Can affect other waterfowl. Also said that it all depends on the amount of maternal antibodies passed on to the baby makes a difference in the severity of the disease. Survivors of the virus should not be allowed to reproduce because they can pass it on and eggs from different flocks should not be hatched together unless you know the health history of the parents it can spread and is very contagious. Only prevention is to immunize breeding birds with the live vaccine.
Look up goose parvo or derzsy's disease and you can see the list of symptoms. It seems to be a nasty thing that these poor babies that
get it go through. After i read the beginning of this thread and saw that falling backwards was one symptom with these goslings i was afraid my 2 ducklings had it, but the list did not say anything about falling or flailing.
Thanks for the info 8 I looked in both of my Holderread books and didn't see it.
 

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