Fowl pox in one pen. Vaccinate the rest?


9 Years
May 5, 2010
San Diego (goodbye LA)
Hi all,

I have 3 birds with pox on their combs, faces, and feet.

These birds were breeders in separate pens from larger laying flocks.

The question is whether I should vaccinate the remaining layers, or just let it run its course through the flock.

If I did vaccinate, it looks like Chick-N-Pox TC is indicated for layers without withdrawl of eggs (whereas others seem contra-indicated for layers and/or require withdrawl).

It's not clear that Chick-N-Pox would give permanent immunity, whereas having the disease would. On the other hand, having the disease among about 2 dozen other birds would increase the amount of virus in the ground and make it more likely that future birds brought or hatched into the flock would get exposed.

Right now the unaffected birds are in hoop houses covered with shade cloth screen that should be fairly effective at keeping mosquitos (the main vector) out. But they are not without some holes and gaps, and virus may get tracked on peoples feet from the pens of the affected birds.

Of course, the afflicted birds are my most valuable birds (my Cream Legbars and a Delaware).

(All this is not in my backyard flock, but at the farm where I am keeping my breeders and overseeing the layer flocks).
I have just realized that my LF flock has fowl pox as well...not my silkies but that is prob due to the Mosquitos not being able to get to their face, feet ect....

I read up on it and it says that once they have it they will get over it naturally in a few weeks and then be immune to I have sort of thought...well let outrun its course...better that they all get it now and be immune if it is not going to hurt them...

It doesn't look good but they are all acting normal except molting like crazy....

Sorry I don't have any experience with it to answer you question about vaccination but everything says that it shouldn't hurt them
I guess one issue is the economic one of reduction in egg production, the other is potential mortality.

Although Damerow (Chicken Health Handbook) reports mortality for Dry Pox of 1-2%, she reports mortality from Wet Pox of "up to 50%." Since they are caused by the same virus, it would be useful to know how many infected chickens develop wet pox, and/or the overall mortality rates for chickens infected with the virus.
Just an update...spent some quality time today with all the girls and looked them pox! I found one old spot on one out of 15 birds but that's it....

All their combs and wattles are a fresh pink/red color again and I have been getting 6 eggs a day now...some girls are molting so they are laying again....

Am glad I let it ride they should be immune to it ... It really didn't effect them too much and you can't even tell they had it...

Just thought I would update...
Good to read! I think a few of my girls have a mild case of it. It doesn't seem to bother them, so I am just watching to make sure there aren't any new symptoms. Each hen that had a spot, only had maybe two small spots on their waddle or comb.

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