Concerned about one chick

TxSyd

In the Brooder
Feb 27, 2019
6
57
46
SE Texas
I got these chicks last Week (they’re technically my sister’s) they’re about 6 weeks old. The girl she bought them from raised them from day old chicks. From the beginning I noticed one was smaller than the other 4. Yesterday evening, i saw her poop water. Today I got a better look at her and noticed one of her eyes had bubbles and was swollen. Additionally I noticed she is literally drowning in her feathers. She has had no other symptoms.

She seems to be eating and drinking fine, yesterday was their first day out in the yard and for the most part have had no direct contact with the rest of my flock, the exception being my chicken mayor Peep. Do I need to cull this entire group? Or is it too late? Or could this be something else?

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azygous

Enabler
11 Years
Dec 11, 2009
23,329
33,395
1,122
Colorado Rockies
The eye swelling looks like a common (MG) respiratory infection, likely transmitted to the chicks following hatching. You can confirm it by asking the girl who sold the chicks to you if other chickens in her flock have had similar symptoms.

Whether you cull these chicks or treat them is strictly your choice, but the virus that has caused it will be present in their cells for life.
 

humblehillsfarm

Crowing
Mar 27, 2020
3,059
5,827
391
Southwestern Pennsylvania
My Coop
My Coop
I got these chicks last Week (they’re technically my sister’s) they’re about 6 weeks old. The girl she bought them from raised them from day old chicks. From the beginning I noticed one was smaller than the other 4. Yesterday evening, i saw her poop water. Today I got a better look at her and noticed one of her eyes had bubbles and was swollen. Additionally I noticed she is literally drowning in her feathers. She has had no other symptoms.

She seems to be eating and drinking fine, yesterday was their first day out in the yard and for the most part have had no direct contact with the rest of my flock, the exception being my chicken mayor Peep. Do I need to cull this entire group? Or is it too late? Or could this be something else?

View attachment 2176451 View attachment 2176453

What do you mean drowning in feathers? At this age it is very normal for them to have a lot of dandruff (actually feather tube casings) as they are constantly growing new feathers, so if that's what you mean by drowning in feathers, your birds are normal.

As for the other symptoms, they sound fairly classic for a respiratory infection which can transmit to the entire flock, but some may show symptoms while other's suppress them. Others may respond well to treatment and suppress the virus post treatment. Others may have varying degrees of symptoms for the rest of their life regardless of treatment, but not all respiratory symptoms are viral either. I personally lean toward treatment as I've had success in my own flock. I was fortunate to visit an avian vet for my bird and was grateful for the knowledge he imparted on me. He prescribed an antibiotic and a steroid, but what he offered is not over the counter so you'd have to do a little digging or hope someone else will respond with advice for meds.

Culling is a personal choice, one that I try hard not to pass judgment on. However in my personal life, I always try to treat the ailment before considering culling as a viable solution. I feel that it would be senseless to cull them all if only one is showing symptoms considering the others have yet to show anything, or at least you haven't indicated that they have. The only thing you may consider is if in the future you add new birds to the flock, they could also get the virus.
 

TxSyd

In the Brooder
Feb 27, 2019
6
57
46
SE Texas
She is probably about 2/3 the size of the rest of her sisters. By drowning in feathers I mean her feathers are the same size as her sisters so she is quite literally in them.

I’m hesitant to cull them, In part because my niece is already attached to “her chicken” and odds are it one has it they probably all do. I will contact the girl I got them from, to see if any of her flock is showing symptoms. But she raised this batch from day old chicks and I don’t think they had contact with her main flock.

I probably just won’t be getting any new birds for the next few years and will just start over fresh when they’re gone after they’re gone and everything has been thoroughly disinfected.

What do you mean drowning in feathers? At this age it is very normal for them to have a lot of dandruff (actually feather tube casings) as they are constantly growing new feathers, so if that's what you mean by drowning in feathers, your birds are normal.

As for the other symptoms, they sound fairly classic for a respiratory infection which can transmit to the entire flock, but some may show symptoms while other's suppress them. Others may respond well to treatment and suppress the virus post treatment. Others may have varying degrees of symptoms for the rest of their life regardless of treatment, but not all respiratory symptoms are viral either. I personally lean toward treatment as I've had success in my own flock. I was fortunate to visit an avian vet for my bird and was grateful for the knowledge he imparted on me. He prescribed an antibiotic and a steroid, but what he offered is not over the counter so you'd have to do a little digging or hope someone else will respond with advice for meds.

Culling is a personal choice, one that I try hard not to pass judgment on. However in my personal life, I always try to treat the ailment before considering culling as a viable solution. I feel that it would be senseless to cull them all if only one is showing symptoms considering the others have yet to show anything, or at least you haven't indicated that they have. The only thing you may consider is if in the future you add new birds to the flock, they could also get the virus.
 

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