earthworms

newchickenroost

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 22, 2014
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i just found an earthworm and gave it to my chickens, i then read online that they can cause gapeworm. Do you think 1 earthworm will matter, if it does matter where and what can i get to treat gapeworm
 

sourland

Broody Magician
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May 3, 2009
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Welcome to BYC. The only earthworms can 'give' gapeworm to chickens is if they have been exposed to the feces of infected birds. I think that your chickens are probably safe.
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
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Feb 18, 2011
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Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC! X3, don't worry, your chicks should be fine.
 

TwoCrows

A Native Raven
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Mar 21, 2011
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Welcome to BYC!

Yes, they can give gapeworms to chickens, but it is not all that likely. So you are probably safe. But just the same, I wouldn't offer up any more. Stick to mealworms or dried crickets. :)

Enjoy your new flock and welcome to ours!
 

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
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10 Years
Aug 26, 2009
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If you are going to start giving them treats apart from their regular feed, you should sprinkle a little grit over their food. If they are old enough to venture outside they will pick up grit on their own.
 

ChickensAreSweet

Heavenly Grains for Hens
9 Years
Jun 8, 2010
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My chickens eat earthworms all the time. Gapeworm is rare.

If I could choose, I would NOT allow my chickens to eat earthworms because of the gapeworm risk. However, there is nothing I can do about it.

I wouldn't worry about gapeworm- it is so rare. Just worry if you see them gaping (not adjusting their crops/yawning) and struggling to breathe. Other conditions can cause this too, so even then, it is possible or even likely that it wouldn't be gapeworm.

Enjoy your chickens!!

If you do ever have to deal with gapeworm, dawg53 has written many informative posts on how to treat it. Don't worm your chickens unless you need to, though- it is very hard on them. Wormers are off label for egglaying hens and you will need to research it carefully. I worm my chickens twice a year because I have had a problem with worms here (not gapeworm though).

I hope this helps.

Drumstick Diva gave you good advice about grit!
 
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