Emergency please HELP!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by PrettyChickens15, Dec 22, 2018.

  1. PrettyChickens15

    PrettyChickens15 Songster

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    My chickens feathers are falling out. Hundreds of them in the coop and run. She is acting extremely lethargic, closing her eyes. I think I saw some little brownish mites on her. At the touch feathers will fall out. I don't know what to do! Please help!
    I have her in a cool quiet space
     
  2. PrettyChickens15

    PrettyChickens15 Songster

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    She's also shivering
    [​IMG] 20181222_123909.jpg 20181222_123843.jpg JPEG_20181222_124303_-998497560.jpg
     
  3. PirateGirl

    PirateGirl Chicken Lover, Duck Therapist

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    It might be molt, which is totally normal and nothing to worry about, but it could be parasites, which would need to be treated. Here is some reading to get your started.

    How old is your chicken? Is she eating and drinking? Do any other chickens seem to be affected? Does it look like there are new pin feathers growing in?

    Also do a web search of poultry lice and mites and look at photos so you know what to look for. Mites/lice can often be seen under wings and around the vent as well as crawling along the roost bar after dark (check with a flashlight).

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/chickens-loosing-feathers-managing-your-flocks-molt.64576/

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/mites-lice-treatment-and-prevention.64597/

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/ar...ow-to-protect-your-chickens-from-mites.47721/
     
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  4. AnimalGeek23

    AnimalGeek23 Crowing

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    X2, it's probably that she's molting! :)
     
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  5. PrettyChickens15

    PrettyChickens15 Songster

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    I have fed her 2 eggs this morning and some electrolyte water. I have tried spraying her skin with this spray. It's in the 20°f range. Will she be able to stay warm if I put her out in the flock? My dad is cleaning the coop extremely thoroughly, power washing it and scrubbing roost down. What can I do for her? She acts uncomfortable when I pick her up. She is 2-3 years old. None of the other chickens look affected, but I'm sure they are.
    20181223_092858.jpg my dad is going to out that powder in the coop 20181223_092803.jpg this is what I have sprayed on her 20181223_092640.jpg this is her this morning..
    Thank you guys so much. I can see the light brown mites on her if I look through her feathers.
     

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  6. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

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    At that age she is almost certainly moulting which is an annual event, usually in the autumn but some birds start earlier and others seem to wait until the depths of winter to do it. When they hatched and your climate can have a bearing on it. Some birds lose a mass of feathers all in one go and get large bald patches whilst others are more subtle and just lose a few odd feathers here and there but take longer to complete their moult.
    Many birds feel uncomfortable when they moult and do not like being handled. Some will withdraw from the flock and may lose their place in the pecking order. Loose droppings and a loss of appetite can also occur. My birds seem to really like spinach and other greens when they moult although the general advice is to increase the protein in their diet with a little meat or fish or insects. They will usually stop laying eggs too as it takes a lot of nutrition to grow new feathers and they can't generally eat enough to make feathers and eggs.
    The brown insects will likely be poultry lice. Lack of dust bathing opportunities in winter mean that lice can flourish, so providing your flock with some dry loose dirt/compost/wood ash mixture in a container in the coop or other covered area to dust bath in will help or dusting them with poultry dust/louse powder.
     
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  7. PrettyChickens15

    PrettyChickens15 Songster

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    Okay thank you, but, is it okay to put her outside when she's been in the warm house and she's lost most of her downy feathers?
     
  8. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

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    How long have you had her indoors and what are your outdoor temperatures at the moment.... day and night time minimums. Have you had her in a warm room in the house or a cool room? If cool and she has only been in for a day or two then I would put her back out and just monitor. If she has been in the warm for several days and it is freezing outside, can you transition her back to the cold via a garage or porch for a fww days?
     
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  9. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    My Coop
    I recommend Permethrin spray for the mites. Most feed stores such as Tractor Supply carries both the ready to spray and the concentrate that you mix with water. You can spray the birds when they are roosting, but carefully without getting it in their faces. Spray inside their coops spraying every crack and crevice, on and under the roosts, inside and out side the nest boxes, ceiling, walls, everything. I had mites for the first time ever this past summer and the birds were terrible. I initially sprayed weekly and eventually got rid of the mites but the birds looked terrible. Now the birds are now looking much better and no more mites. I actually gave the birds flea baths thinking it might kill the mites and it did some but there were a few after the baths. The mites can feed the life out of the birds if not treated. The mites can hide in the cracks and crevices in the coops so just dusting the birds may help but spraying inside the coops kill the mites but it does not the kill the mite eggs so a thorough spraying is needed with followup sprays so when the mite eggs hatch they will be killed too. Just my opinion.
    [​IMG]
     
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  10. PirateGirl

    PirateGirl Chicken Lover, Duck Therapist

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    I agree with this, and have used permetherin successfully to treat a mite infestation as well. If it is mites they mostly live in the coop and feed on the birds at night, so thorough coop cleaning and spraying is the most important part. (I think it's different if it's lice, but I believe the same product will work). When I spritzed my chickens at night I would spray up towards the roost, under their tails (mites like vents). If I could, I would spray a little under their wings as well. Permetherin is extremely toxic to cats, so if it is a walk in coop/shed/barn be sure to keep any cats away and put your clothes in the wash immediately as well as shower/scrub up before you handle your cats (if you have them). It is not toxic to people however and is the active ingredient in things like shampoo to treat head lice in people.
     
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