Diseased liver

Lady Marion

In the Brooder
12 Years
Oct 24, 2007
I had to put down a turkey last week, thought perhaps her heart was failing (Happened last year to two of my BBB's, so I figured early butchering was the solution if they showed lethargy), but it was much worse, because i could not use the meat on this bird. Notice the yellow lesions. Blackhead, no doubt. The green color, I have been told by the extension agent, was probably due to staph or E-coli infection secondary to the blackhead.

there is no treatment except the Flagyl, as some here have suggested, but the agent said i could never eat the meat. I looked up natural alternatives, and found that cayenne pepper and ginger are helpful. I checked out my theory with a veterinary patholigist at church, and he said that those are great ideas, and had shown some success when they were studied by poultry researchers in Georgia.

The remainging turkeys are improving. I give them cayenne, ginger, lots of probiotics, diatomaceous earth to cut down on cecal worms, and most of all, I penned them up in a paddock where goats had been but chickens had not been. I am keeping my fingers crossed. They are starting to run to us again at feeding time, and are more vocal and active.



No, not great at all. I'm surprised that hen didn't drop dead on her own! When I saw it, my heart just sank, and I felt so depressed. All my friends have turkeys free ranging with their chickens, and they have NO problems whatsoever!
Thank you so much for posting those shots, and sorry you're having these troubles. Another member, who was also so kind as to post shots are in the following thread (please take a look at link in my post as the broiler liver shot of blackhead lesion/cecal cores is pretty detailed) for comparison: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=529870&p=1

Also, another disease to consider: Turkey Osteomyelitis Complex TOC. Also known as Green Liver Disease. A couple of papers on this:


I'd be tempted to send those pics off to UC Davis and Cornell (both have pretty extensive avian pathology collections - research vets).

Please keep us posted on, hopefully, continued improvement of your other turks.

Also, there is some evidence that DE can inhibit uptake of some nutrients and no evidence of being of any utility for worming at all.

Study on additive of DE as potential probiotic: http://docsdrive.com/pdfs/ansinet/ijps/2008/862-871.pdf

Good luck and, again, thank you for posting the shots!

Kuntrygirl, can you R click on links/save and open locally on your machine?
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I agree, I think I would either send the pics or perhaps the whole liver to see what is going on. Those yellow spots don't quite look like blackhead to me. That is a beautiful shade of green, just doesn't look good on a liver. Was the gallbladder attached and intact? That looks about the ame shade of green... Ivan3, thank you for the information... I have never heard of that one!

Amazing pictures, Lady Marion, thank you for posting!
I had a nightmare last night, that I butched a chicken and it had a liver like this. Then when I sold some eggs, for some reason the yolks were green, too. Glad it was just a nightmare!

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