Could my flock had Marek's and have no symptoms?

busychicks

Chirping
6 Years
Nov 16, 2013
19
11
84
Autauga County, Alabama
I sold a young rooster to someone in February. They recently texted me to let me know that he died and the vet who did the necropsy said it was Marek's (No PCR test). Their flock is small and was vaccinated, so it's assumed by the vet the Marek's originated in my flock.

I was shocked because I have never seen any signs of Marek's in my flock. Last year we had two unexplained death's of a young pullet (necropsy didn't show anything obvious) and an older Rooster (did not necropsy, but assumed heart trouble/failure) but the rest of the twenty-odd chickens in the flock haven't shown any signs of being anything but healthy. So my question is, how possibly or likely is it I have a flock of chickens with Marek's with no visible health issues and this one rooster that has been out of my care for months dies from Marek's?

This is not a who to blame post, but one of concern for my flock and my peace of mind since it doesn't seem like there's a reliable test I can do if the Marek's is dormant. They free range, so it's not unlikely they've been exposed.
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
5 Years
Apr 9, 2016
14,342
19,971
832
California's Redwood Coast
Their flock is small and was vaccinated, so it's assumed by the vet the Marek's originated in my flock.
Hi there, hope you are enjoying BYC! :frow

Ignorant assumption! And from a VET... SMH! :he

Being vaccinated means their flock won't show symptoms even if they have Marek's. It does NOT mean their flock won't catch or carry it.

Seems as though personal vets who do necropsies take the easy answer instead of looking as deep as the state vets do. And they offer answer that will appease their customers. :hmm

Vaccinated birds NOT welcome here... to hide the disease.

According to MY state poultry vet at UC Davis in California... Marek's is "ubiquitous" in environments where poultry is kept. That means found everywhere.

Last year we had two unexplained death's of a young pullet (necropsy didn't show anything obvious)
Who did the necropsy? You or a professional?

I would figure that cockerel caught the Marek's at their place... and be sure NOT to bring in ANY birds that have ever been to anyone's pasture to my own flock.

Free ranging birds can very easily be exposed to Marek's as it can be brought in by wild birds.

If YOUR flock is NOT vaccinated AND it was a professional necropsy done on the pullet that had no signs of Marek's... I would not worry about it coming from my flock or being among it. I would simply maintain my own bio security... and THANK the person for letting me know a bird ended up with a Marek's diagnosis... MORE than 6 MONTHS after leaving my property.

The best resource I have seen on the subject...
Marek's

Sorry for them folks loss after giving a boy a flock of his own. :(

Glad your flock seems to be in good health! :thumbsup
 

busychicks

Chirping
6 Years
Nov 16, 2013
19
11
84
Autauga County, Alabama
Thank you for the response, I will stop freaking out unless someone drops dead.

Seems as though personal vets who do necropsies take the easy answer instead of looking as deep as the state vets do. And they offer answer that will appease their customers.
Their necropsy was done by a University vet, so I'm hoping they got the correct diagnosis for that bird. I'm getting what he vet said second hand, so I don't know exactly what the vet said said or what the chicken owners might have not said. Obviously they can't have known the health history of my flock, but the fact that they didn't mention any other possibility made me wonder if I was missing some symptoms in my flock or I had all asymptomatic carrier chickens.

Pullet's necropsy was NOT professionally done, so it's really not proof of anything. The pullet started acting lethargic one evening and was dead in quarantine by the next morning so I didn't really suspect an illness since it happened to quickly. This all happened last August. Roo's death was in November last year. No health issues except lice and coyotes since then.

I'm pretty sad because he was the last chick from my favorite hen and roo before the roo died (mentioned above) and a dog got the hen. He was a sweetheart and he really landed the rooster jackpot with them.
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom