First time adding to my flock....a few questions.

ZeeuwR

In the Brooder
May 26, 2020
10
4
13
I picked up these 3 last weekend at a farm just starting out their chicken business. They were sold to me as 9 week old pullets, so fingers crossed on that part, I don't need anymore roosters!

I have them in this little coop to quarantine and let the 2 groups get to know each other. It is inside my chicken yard, which leads me to question one. Was this a mistake? Have I put my flock in jeopardy by having the quarantine coop inside the yard?

Question 2, I'm seeing some poop which is concerning. They are pooping green and there really isn't any grass for them to eat, plus I saw a very watery diarrhea looking poop that was very light in color. I read green could mean Marecks, but I don't see any other signs of that, and I'm pretty sure the farm is NPIP, which means we should be clear on that I believe. I'm wondering if the watery poo is due to the feed I use. I am giving them Home Fresh Multi Flock grower which is what I feed my roosters, and it contains 22% protein. This is what I raised my flock on, but if they were started on a lower protein feed, could that be causing the diarrhea?

Quesrion 3, how long do you quarantine before mixing them into the existing flock? I believe I read one month.


Sorry for the long post, and thanks in advance for any info.
 

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Eggcessive

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Apr 3, 2011
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It is always a risk bringing in birds from someone else. NPIP is not a guarantee against getting chickens who are completely healthy. They should have been kept away from your other chicks for quarantine, but watch for any diarrhea, acting lethargic, or puffed up hunched posture that might be signs of coccidiosis. Look them over for lice or mites so they don’t transfer that to your chickens. Good luck.
 

cluckmecoop7

Crossing the Road
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Jan 4, 2019
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My Coop
I picked up these 3 last weekend at a farm just starting out their chicken business. They were sold to me as 9 week old pullets, so fingers crossed on that part, I don't need anymore roosters!

I have them in this little coop to quarantine and let the 2 groups get to know each other. It is inside my chicken yard, which leads me to question one. Was this a mistake? Have I put my flock in jeopardy by having the quarantine coop inside the yard?

Question 2, I'm seeing some poop which is concerning. They are pooping green and there really isn't any grass for them to eat, plus I saw a very watery diarrhea looking poop that was very light in color. I read green could mean Marecks, but I don't see any other signs of that, and I'm pretty sure the farm is NPIP, which means we should be clear on that I believe. I'm wondering if the watery poo is due to the feed I use. I am giving them Home Fresh Multi Flock grower which is what I feed my roosters, and it contains 22% protein. This is what I raised my flock on, but if they were started on a lower protein feed, could that be causing the diarrhea?

Quesrion 3, how long do you quarantine before mixing them into the existing flock? I believe I read one month.


Sorry for the long post, and thanks in advance for any info.
Question #1: Well, if they are sick, your other flock is definitely in danger of getting whatever it is. But then again, they might not be sick. I can't help you with that part.

Question #3: Sorry, I can't help with #2, but you are correct. 1 month is minimum.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
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Feb 2, 2009
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Was this a mistake? Have I put my flock in jeopardy by having the quarantine coop inside the yard?

Chickens spread diseases and parasites by sharing food or water, pecking at the ground where the others have pooped, by vectors like grasshoppers, grubs, and mosquitoes, or just floating on the wind. Very few of us have the facilities to do a total quarantine, that takes a lot of room. You need different food storage and different feed and water buckets because those could transmit things. You even need to change clothing, especially shoes. A true total quarantine is not easy. The better your quarantine the more parasites or diseases you are protected against. With the quarantine coop in the run area you haven't accomplished much. That doesn't necessarily mean disaster.

Chickens sometimes develop what we call flock immunities. They can be carriers of a disease but show no signs. Coccidiosis is a great example but there are others. This could be your flock or the other flock. This means your flock could infect the new ones and you didn't even know your flock was a carrier. Since they have developed an immunity quarantining isn't going to do you much good against a flock immunity. That's not what quarantine was developed for.

When chickens meet new chickens they can pass diseases or parasites to each other. This is what quarantine was developed to counter. If chickens come from a swap or auction they have very likely been exposed to new chickens. If the person who manages the flock brings in new chickens the risk goes up. If the flock the chickens came from was a closed flock, which means they have not been exposed to new chickens, and if the person managing them would recognize a problem and tell you about it, they have essentially been in quarantine.

Different diseases or parasites have different incubation periods. A 30 day quarantine will catch most of them so that is the normal recommendation. That doesn't mean it catches all of them. Marek's typically has a longer incubation period, could be several months, for example.

Many people regularly bring home chickens form swaps or auctions and don't have serious problems even without quarantine. If they do have problems they are usually more inconveniences than something that can wipe out your flock if you treat them. Things like mites, lice, or worms. But, and this is a big but, it is possible you can bring home something that wipes out your flock. It does happen.

I'm pretty sure the farm is NPIP

This does not mean nearly as much as many people assume. Each state is different. NPIP was initially set up to combat pullorum and it has been very successful. We've gone from where pullorum was threatening the existence of the chicken industry to where it is hardly heard of today. Some states NPIP only tests for pullorum, that's all it takes to get the federal dollars to pay for the program. Some states also test for other things, like avian flu for example. I don't think any test for coccidiosis. Some might test for Marek's but probably not a lot. Some test for AI. Since you mention NPIP you are obviously in the USA but I don't have a clue which state. Even if I knew which state I'd leave it up to you to research it and find out what is actually covered by your state's NPIP program.

I'm seeing some poop which is concerning.

That could be caused by what they are eating, it could be caused by a disease or parasite. 5 or 6 days is really fast for Coccidiosis to show up if your flock infected them but especially if they are in a wet area it could happen. With two to three weeks of exposure they typically develop immunity to that strain of Coccidiosis so it is unlikely they brought it with them unless they were recently exposed to other chickens. It could be a sign of worms. Check with your veterinarian. It might be a good idea to take a fecal sample in for testing.

As far as quarantine goes it is too late. While it is possible they brought something in that will endanger your flock it isn't that likely, especially if it has been a closed flock. That loose poop is concerning but it could be a change in diet or something they are eating. I remember one time I fed my flock cooked beet skins after I canned beets. The next morning I thought they were pooping pure fresh blood until I remembered those beet skins. As long as yours are acting healthy I would not panic, but it might be worth checking out, especially since today is a Friday and you can't get much done ay the vets on a weekend.

Good luck with it, you'll probably be OK. But pay attention to how they act.
 

ZeeuwR

In the Brooder
May 26, 2020
10
4
13
Was this a mistake? Have I put my flock in jeopardy by having the quarantine coop inside the yard?

Chickens spread diseases and parasites by sharing food or water, pecking at the ground where the others have pooped, by vectors like grasshoppers, grubs, and mosquitoes, or just floating on the wind. Very few of us have the facilities to do a total quarantine, that takes a lot of room. You need different food storage and different feed and water buckets because those could transmit things. You even need to change clothing, especially shoes. A true total quarantine is not easy. The better your quarantine the more parasites or diseases you are protected against. With the quarantine coop in the run area you haven't accomplished much. That doesn't necessarily mean disaster.

Chickens sometimes develop what we call flock immunities. They can be carriers of a disease but show no signs. Coccidiosis is a great example but there are others. This could be your flock or the other flock. This means your flock could infect the new ones and you didn't even know your flock was a carrier. Since they have developed an immunity quarantining isn't going to do you much good against a flock immunity. That's not what quarantine was developed for.

When chickens meet new chickens they can pass diseases or parasites to each other. This is what quarantine was developed to counter. If chickens come from a swap or auction they have very likely been exposed to new chickens. If the person who manages the flock brings in new chickens the risk goes up. If the flock the chickens came from was a closed flock, which means they have not been exposed to new chickens, and if the person managing them would recognize a problem and tell you about it, they have essentially been in quarantine.

Different diseases or parasites have different incubation periods. A 30 day quarantine will catch most of them so that is the normal recommendation. That doesn't mean it catches all of them. Marek's typically has a longer incubation period, could be several months, for example.

Many people regularly bring home chickens form swaps or auctions and don't have serious problems even without quarantine. If they do have problems they are usually more inconveniences than something that can wipe out your flock if you treat them. Things like mites, lice, or worms. But, and this is a big but, it is possible you can bring home something that wipes out your flock. It does happen.

I'm pretty sure the farm is NPIP

This does not mean nearly as much as many people assume. Each state is different. NPIP was initially set up to combat pullorum and it has been very successful. We've gone from where pullorum was threatening the existence of the chicken industry to where it is hardly heard of today. Some states NPIP only tests for pullorum, that's all it takes to get the federal dollars to pay for the program. Some states also test for other things, like avian flu for example. I don't think any test for coccidiosis. Some might test for Marek's but probably not a lot. Some test for AI. Since you mention NPIP you are obviously in the USA but I don't have a clue which state. Even if I knew which state I'd leave it up to you to research it and find out what is actually covered by your state's NPIP program.

I'm seeing some poop which is concerning.

That could be caused by what they are eating, it could be caused by a disease or parasite. 5 or 6 days is really fast for Coccidiosis to show up if your flock infected them but especially if they are in a wet area it could happen. With two to three weeks of exposure they typically develop immunity to that strain of Coccidiosis so it is unlikely they brought it with them unless they were recently exposed to other chickens. It could be a sign of worms. Check with your veterinarian. It might be a good idea to take a fecal sample in for testing.

As far as quarantine goes it is too late. While it is possible they brought something in that will endanger your flock it isn't that likely, especially if it has been a closed flock. That loose poop is concerning but it could be a change in diet or something they are eating. I remember one time I fed my flock cooked beet skins after I canned beets. The next morning I thought they were pooping pure fresh blood until I remembered those beet skins. As long as yours are acting healthy I would not panic, but it might be worth checking out, especially since today is a Friday and you can't get much done ay the vets on a weekend.

Good luck with it, you'll probably be OK. But pay attention to how they act.
Thank you so much for the response. This was very informative and helpful. I greatly appreciate it.
 

ZeeuwR

In the Brooder
May 26, 2020
10
4
13
It is always a risk bringing in birds from someone else. NPIP is not a guarantee against getting chickens who are completely healthy. They should have been kept away from your other chicks for quarantine, but watch for any diarrhea, acting lethargic, or puffed up hunched posture that might be signs of coccidiosis. Look them over for lice or mites so they don’t transfer that to your chickens. Good luck.
Thank you for the advice. I will do that.
 

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